Saturday, September 13, 2014

Before Amen

Before Amen (International Edition): The Power of a Simple Prayer

There are some beautiful ways to pray~ 
We can pray through the Valley of Vision book.
We can pray through Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication.
We can pray by just talking and thinking towards God all day. 
And Max Lucado has offered us another way... the Pocket Prayer. 
It's quiet, simple, and direct. From our lips to His ear, our heart to His hand. 

I am wary of books on prayer. I hate the idea that we'll distort prayer somehow, and make faith more difficult for people. 
I'm afraid we'll make prayer seem like a formula or a machine.... something that "works" or "fails" or is "reliable." 
I don't know if prayer "works." That's kind of like saying a Mother's love for her baby "works." I think that is the wrong concept for it. 
I don't know if prayer "fails." I know Love never fails, and God is love. 
And I don't like the idea of prayer being "reliable" either... Do you mean you always get God's ear and His care, or that you always get the answer you thought you wanted? 
I'm frankly unsure what to make of my own Lord Jesus's promise that if we ask we will receive. I know that He is Love, and He is Good, and He always does the Right thing, so if we're asking for goodness, love, and righteousness we receive it. We are encouraged to pray for our dear ones, our dreams, and our desires. And He delights in protecting, providing, and preserving. 
Yet I also know that sometimes death, disease, and destruction come to us as well. 
Prayer doesn't ward those things off like an incantation. Prayer brings us close to God, and takes out cares before Him. 
And He acts for us. That's all I know. 

So I was eager to get this book, but cautious about it as well. 
I really like Max Lucado. His writing is calm and steady and not fearful. It's good for the soul.
This book isn't an extensive how-to-pray manual. (Do we even need those anyway?)
This is a very thin book that introduces us to The Pocket Prayer, and reminds us that when we pray our posture or phraseology ain't that important. 
It's all about the fact that God loves His kids, and we are the kids, and we can tell Him anything and He waits to listen. 

Thank you Litfuse for my review copy. 

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