Standing on your red dot – my interpretation of the concept ‘finding your red dot’ which the American author Larry Crabb came up with, in his book ‘The PAPA prayer’(2007)

‘Standing on your red dot’ is a form of prayer that helps you to come to God in your vulnerability in your prayer. 

Here I tell you something more about it. 

Do you know those city maps you can take a look at to find your way to your destination? 

There is always a red dot at the place where you are, on that map. 

“You are here” is next to it then.

Larry Crabb wrote about this red dot: “You want to know where you are before you start looking for where you want to go. It’s the same on the spiritual journey. We need to know where we are before we try to get where we should be.”

If you stand on your red dot in your prayer, then you say to God: “This is where I am”. And then you just say what is on your mind, right that moment. It can be anything. Often they’ll be things that bother or frustrate you.

For example, when I step on my red dot, I hear myself say ‘I don’t feel like praying at all’, ‘I feel rushed and restless’,’ I am angry about something that just happened ‘, ‘I am sitting here now, but I actually have much more important things to do ‘ or  ‘are you even listening?’ All that can come up if you step on your red dot, when you take the time to sincerely answer the question of where you actually are at that moment. When you speak from the heart, with your guard down. 

So it is an actionable type of prayer: stand on your red dot and say “Lord, this is where I am.”

I hope and think, like in my own experience, it will leave you feeling relieved. To be honest about what’s going on. To be vulnerable. There’s no need to embellish anything. 

Well, that can also happen during lectio divina, when you arrive at the stage of prayer. You start by reading, followed by meditating and then by praying. And when you get to the point of praying, try practicing it this way. Just stand on your red dot and say to God, “Lord, here I am.” 

Just lay it all on the line. 

Back to lesson 7

All lessons: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21