A Randomized Controlled Trial of a 2-Week Internet-Based Contemplative Prayer Program for Christians With Daily Stress

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Abstract

In this 2-week, two-armed randomized controlled trial, the authors investigated an online contemplative prayer program for Christians with daily stress. Drawing from the stress and coping, mindfulness, religious coping, and contemplative literatures, the brief program sought to help Christians with daily stress change their evaluation of environmental demands by surrendering to God’s perceived care. With roots in the contemplative Christian tradition, the Jesus Prayer was practiced both formally and informally for a 2-week period of time. Findings revealed both within- and between-groups differences, with the Jesus Prayer group (n = 44) outperforming a wait-list group (n = 42) on measures of stress and surrender as a form of religious coping. Study limitations and directions for future research are offered in order to continue to build this burgeoning research base on Christian-sensitive interventions for the amelioration of recurrent psychological symptoms.

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