Celebrity songbird Justin Bieber, who has used his social media platform to talk about his faith, took to Instagram once again over the weekend to share several guided prayers with his 122 million Instagram followers.
The video prayers are generally 4-6 minutes long, contemplative in style and are led by Bieber’s pastor, Judah Smith. Bieber first mentioned the prayers in a September post.
“Here’s a guided prayer,” he wrote at the time. “When you have a quiet moment get into a comfortable position and listen. They have really been helping me and thought I would share.”
His most recent posts are brief, similarly encouraging his followers to get comfortable and enjoy. One focuses on Romans 8:28, the verse that reminds believers that nothing can separate us from the love of God.
The video starts with Pastor Judah reading the Scripture and leading viewers into reciting three statements pertaining to the Scripture reference. He then models meditative breathing often used in the ancient practice of contemplative prayer, FaithWire reports.
The video then shifts into an extended prayer.
“God, thank you we are loved,” Pastor Judah prays. “We are loved not because of our own doing, our own earning or deserving. . . but because of who you are. You are love and you love us unconditionally and endlessly.”
“And we thank you for that.”
Smith then uses the imagery of music to talk about deep worship.
“God is the greatest artist of all time,” Pastor Judah said as he urges listeners to put their hands in the air, a common practice at concerts, and “joining with all the created beings, and all of the creation itself in glorifying and honoring the creator. In truth, we are doing the very thing we were created to do.”
The video ends with the pastor thanking God for his majesty.
“God, we thank you right now,” he said. “It is our privilege and our honor to think about you, to acknowledge you and to worship you in this moment. You are big, you are wonderful, you are powerful. You are awe-inspiring. In truth, you are beyond our description. We love being loved by you. And we love you because you first loved us. Thank you, God. Amen.”
According to Fox News, Smith and his wife, Chelsea Smith, co-leaders of Churchome in Los Angeles and Seattle, have launched Churchome Global App 2.0, a redesigned app that now includes the guided prayers.
"We realized that people all over the world are looking for a more constant connection to God," Pastor Judah told Fox News. "Chelsea and I developed this practice together in order to guide our members in prayer, bring them inspiration, and help them better connect with God. It is especially timely for those during this holiday season who may be feeling lonely, pressured, or anxious; we hope these prayers can bring them peace.”
His wife added that the prayer videos are designed to foster “community and relationship.”
“We know that prayer has tangible benefits," Pastor Chelsea said. "It helps people gain perspective, have more clarity, and have the confidence to know that they are being divinely guided. With Guided Prayers, we’re marrying the prayer experience with a real focus on community and relationship. We believe that the No. 1 way to make this method and technology effective is for it to inspire real connection to others.”
Photo courtesy: Getty Images/Handout
Lori Arnold is a national award-winning journalist whose experience includes 16 years at a daily community newspaper in San Diego and 16 years as writer-editor for the Christian Examiner. She owns StoryLori Media and is a member of the Evangelical Press Association.