Thursday, June 12, 2008

Christian Prayer for Dummies

I have declared 2008 as a "year of prayer" for myself and my congregation. This is taking on several manifestations.
  • During prayer time in worship congregants are coming to the altar for prayer.
  • We are emphasizing and re-vamping our prayer chain ministry.
  • We have installed a "prayer board" to increase the visibility and accessibility of prayer concerns.
  • We are working together on a weekly prayer devotional (on this blog called either "Prayer of the Week," or "Weekly Prayer Thought")

Personally, this year of prayer has influenced what I am reading and what I will be reading. So far this year I have read How to Pray, The Everyday Guide to Simple Prayer, and The Path of Celtic Prayer. I plan to read more prayer titles before the year is out. In addition, I am hoping to get away for a 2-3 day prayer retreat.

One of the books I have read is completely out of character for me. I read Christian Prayer for Dummies. I would normally not read something from the Dummies series mostly because I want substance in my reading. If I am to invest several hours in a book, I want to know that it is going to do some good. I generally think that anything written for dummies is probably not for me. (Maybe it really is for me, but I just do not want to admit it.)

But I tried this one because the author, Rich Wagner, is an old friend of mine. Rich has written several books, but I had never read one until now. I am glad that I finally got around to it.

As the title implies, this book is a basic, introductory course in prayer. It covers everything, but does not get bogged down on too many details. A lot of the information contained here was review for me, but it was a healthy review. After all, is it possible to be too prayerful? There were also many new things. I learned new prayer patterns, interpretations of Scripture and insights.

I commend Christian Prayer for Dummies, and not just because the author is a former buddy. This is a good review for seasoned pray-ers, and a helpful introduction for would-be prayer warriors.

1 comment:

Matt Hallam said...

A year of prayer for you and your congregation. That is a neat idea! It sets the tone for the next year and gives everyone a single point to focus on. I hope everyone jumps on board with you!