As the warmer months begin, it's the perfect time to find new places and spaces for prayer time.
Many may be used to the comfort of their homes, their cars, and church, but God’s presence goes beyond our routines, our commonplaces, and brings comfort beyond our comfort zones. For all we know, there could be a new place where we find peace with God, it just takes a leap of faith.
God’s presence goes beyond our routines, our commonplaces, and brings comfort beyond our comfort zones.
We have all struggled with having intentional prayer time, especially when our minds are fixated on the obligations and time constraints that life and our schedules can create during the work week. Challenging ourselves to be more intentional in finding a space for prayer will make our time with God even more comforting and refreshing for our spirits. Whether it means getting up a bit earlier, fighting the urge to stay in bed, or be out of the house for the afternoon and evening, intentional prayer time can take a little challenge and sacrifice, all of which are worthwhile. We live in a world fixated on time and productivity like clockwork, but God is never limited and defined by time in the day. So let’s take the extra step and self-check to realize there is so much we can soak in as we set aside moments and experiences to craft space for God to move and speak.
Here are some suggestions of places I have explored (and some places I personally have yet to check out) that can be great spaces for prayer time!
Stories Coffee Company
Located at 114th and Dodge, this coffeeshop has become a marketplace of sorts for various church groups, musicians, coffee lovers, and local vendors/crafters! This coffeeshop even has worship nights on Tuesdays through the Worship Leader Network and live music most Thursdays through Saturday nights. Bring your Bible and prayer journal, and you may just meet someone new who is soaking up some prayer time too (fully caffeinated of course)! Some My City group leaders have hosted their groups here, as well as leaders and youth from other local churches. Stories also has a location in Lifegate Church’s West Dodge Campus, which offers an open, quiet atmosphere with various seating and workspaces! This place is filled with community and conversation, and PLENTY of caffeine. As Stories’ motto goes: People. Love. Coffee. Check out their nitro cold brew, honey oat milk lattes, their flavored cold foams, chai tea, smoothies, and plenty of breakfast and lunch bites while you’re there!
- Davenport Location: 11432 Davenport St Ste 1, Omaha, NE 68154
- Lifegate Location: Lifegate Church, 15555 W Dodge Rd, Omaha, NE 68154
This lake, located off 168th and Fort, has been a place that has given me a new appreciation for nature, especially since I am more of an “indoorsy” person. I first went here two years ago to go paddleboarding, where I ended up having a pivotal moment, spiritually. I ended up feeling a resounding peace in my heart, sitting on a paddleboard in the middle of a deep lake, a space that would normally give fear (not a huge fan of deep water). Neighborhood Offshore, a boutique and board shop at the lake, offers kayak and paddleboard rentals, and even offers yoga classes in the middle of the lake. There is also a 5.2 mile trail surrounding the lake, with a scenery of open air and nearby farmland. There is even tennis and pickle ball courts and more at Stone Creek park across the street, if you are looking end your prayer time with physical activity or hangs with your pals! Bring your blanket, your Bible, and even a kayak, for some one-of-a-kind prayer time.
Standing Bear Lake
Here’s another lake spot to check out! Fairly recently, Standing Bear Lake had a new bridge built across their lake, which already has a 3.8 mile wrap-around trail, for visitors to explore. For an extra trek through nature, you can cross 144th street to the Standing Bear Nature Trail. This nature trail has a rejuvenating atmosphere. I love walking there, and it's a shorter walk for those not into long distance walking/running! Don’t forget your headphones for some worship music to set the mood.
If you are looking for a different space outside of your normal routine, with more exotic, nature-filled surroundings, check out Lauritzen Gardens, south of Downtown Omaha. These botanical gardens will make you feel like you are far from the Midwest. There is a fee of $10 for adults ($5 for children) to visit but it is definitely worth it if you're seeking a unique prayer space for yourself to soak in a feel refreshed, no matter the season. They offer both indoor conservatories and outdoor gardens and walks to explore.
This is newer spot I have yet to check out, but I have only heard raving views about the atmosphere and menu at this cafe and coffee spot. With views overlooking downtown, close proximity to other local favorite spots, and outdoor seating, this is the perfect place to start a rest day off with prayer, followed by an afternoon spent downtown. If you are looking for a minimalist, yet historic and cozy spot for your next prayer and journaling time in the morning, check out Cafe Postale in Downtown Omaha! I know I will be this summer!
Highway 6 to Ashland, Nebraska
If you are one of those people who thrives off of prayer time in the car, I’ve got a “drive” more so than a destination, for you! Off of 204th and the interstate, take Highway 6 to Ashland. I’ve taken this drive numerous times recently. The first time I took this highway was when some friends and I were driving home from Lincoln, and it was one of the most peaceful rides home. You’ll drive by the Linoma Beach Lighthouse near a campground, feeling like you’re driving outside the Midwest. You’ll also pass by the Iron Horse Golf Course and neighborhood, which is also worth a drive-through. You can end your drive in Ashland, get yourself ice cream at Cheri O’s or coffee from The Beanery, and take a walk around downtown. Roll your windows down, blast your worship music, and you have yourself an evening drive that will lift your spirits any day.
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