A Norwich parish which has been in the news recently over the dispute between its vicar and the parish council, Wymondham Abbey, has published a spiritual aide entitled the Tray of Peace and Protection. Joining chalice and paten, pyx and thurible, the holy Tea Tray can be an aide “to achieve peace in your life, as well as ways to reduce your stress right now (without simply distracting you.),” the parish website states.
Tray of Peace and Protection
It is important not to let dark ideas and worries get a hold on you as they will bring fear with them. Below is an idea on how to handle them, and prayers.
If you start to think worrying thoughts It is ok. Go through the whole procedure even if you have already done it earlier. You might find ways to personalise and extend the practice in ways that help you.
Instead of worrying
If these thoughts arise – notice the thought – remember you have had them before and they always go. You know straight away this will not last. It can helps to have a plan.
Remind yourself that God loves you is present with you.
If you are reading this and are feeling anxious and haven’t already prepared – no stress!
Just go about getting all the bits together until you are ready to begin. When you are done, make sure your tray is left always ready and inviting.
On your evening tray of peace, and protection you will need
- A pot, cup and calming tea – all just ready for boiling water
- A small healthy snack – perhaps a small dish of nuts and dried fruit
- A favourite book
- Paper or a note book and a pen or pencil
- A candle
- These prayers for peace and protection, print them, or write them down and keep them on the tray
- A warn cosy hat or scarf or woolly socks
Do you want anything else on your peace tray? Include anything small that helps you relax.
How to use the tray of peace and protection
You could use your tray every evening at the time when you begin to feel low. 6pm might be a good time?
Get out the tray and put it in your cosy spot. Put on cosy lights only.
Make some nice tea – do this slowly, do it mindfully. Make yourself comfortable. Pour tea into your favourite cup.
Mindfully – notice the steam the smell and sounds and enjoy them.
Think of the things to be grateful for that day. A bird you saw. A phone call. Things you noticed on a walk. The things that you have done that day – washing up, writing a letter. Note down your gratitude.Time to mindfully light your candle. Pay attention to the light, small movements of the flame.
Taking your time, say the prayers you have written out.
Read them slowly and say them out loud.
End by thanking God for God’s love for all creation.
All animals, all plants, every human being
And for all the Goodness Jesus taught us
And his amazing love for you, personally
And finally thank yourself for setting aside this time to care for yourself.
Rest for a while.
Then perhaps read a small portion of a favourite book.
Or perhaps just sit quietly and watch the candle burn until you feel it is time to move on.
If you have lots of worries come to you through the day, write them down – just a word or two. Put them in a nice basket, they are safe there and you can now let them go until the right time to go through them supported by prayer.