Drinking Deeply

Friday, March 09, 2007 at 11:06 PM

Book Review: Pray With Your Eyes Open

Pray With Your Eyes Open: Looking at God, Ourselves, and Our Prayers, by Richard Pratt, Jr. was a study on prayer. The book was divided into three helpful sections, looking at God, looking at ourselves, and looking at our prayers. Each one was filled with chapters that helped me to understand my own prayers better and how I can deepen my prayer life. Most of the suggestions were solidly grounded in Scripture, though I must confess there were a couple I was not too sure of. But there is more than enough that is worthwhile here (and nothing that will damage someone's faith, but just some that I wonder if it will help) that I would highly recommend this book for anyone who wants to deepen their prayer life. The question/suggestions on the end weren't my cup of tea, but YMMV.

I'll be honest and say that I didn't go into the book with very high expectations, the illustrations look like they were drawn for 5 year olds and I probably could have done without them, and I didn't get rave reviews from a couple friends who had already read the book. But after reading it, I was pretty amazed by how much depth there was to the book. There was a great deal that I learned (or hope I learned! We'll see if this 'faith' leads to works!). I have seen how it has impacted my prayer life already, and I just hope it continues to be something that bears fruit in my life.

One suggestion I would make for the those who would like to read this book is to read it with a friend and have someone who can practice praying with (not that it's "fake" prayer or anything). I realized that it was very easy to read over a chapter and say "yeah, that was nice" and just move on without actually applying the suggestion. It would have been nice to slow down my reading pace and just practice some of the prayer suggestions.

Another book I would highly suggest would be Vincent Cheung's "Prayer and Revelation," which focuses much more on the attributes of God and how that impacts our approach to prayer. There is a little bit of overlap though. The suggestions that this book provides work much better with a larger foundation (always growing though!) of actually knowing who God is and why/how we pray, but it is certainly possible to read this book with much gain without having read the other one.

My recommendation: Own it.

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