Novels

Praying with Jayber

I’ve been rereading Wendell Berry’s Jayber Crow. I’m bearing down on the end, but I wanted to quote this passage here (though it’s long) because it seems important and is indisputably beautiful. It concerns prayer, and Jayber’s ongoing effort to understand what happens in prayer. It expresses some questions and feelings that probably all of… Read More Praying with Jayber

Bible

Thanksgiving

5 By awesome deeds in righteousness You will answer us, O God of our salvation, You who are the confidence of all the ends of the earth, And of the far-off seas; 6 Who established the mountains by His strength, Being clothed with power; 7 You who still the noise of the seas, The noise… Read More Thanksgiving

Nonfiction

Sacred Reading

If someone had mentioned “sacred reading” to me before this week, I would have assumed they meant a literary genre — a category of books focused on sacred topics. But since delving into Thomas Merton’s Book of Hours, I’ve come to a different understanding. Or maybe it’s that Kathleen Deignan’s use of the term in… Read More Sacred Reading

Christianity, Nonfiction

The Love Exchange

There’s more to prayer than petition. Most of us know this. But how good are we at cultivating the other elements of prayer? How persistent? How comfortable? Twice lately, I’ve read of the importance of adoration in a daily time with God. The first source is Andrew Murray’s Deeper Christian Life. The second is Margaret… Read More The Love Exchange

Nonfiction

The Way of a Pilgrim

What does it mean to pray without ceasing? No, really. Specifically. In practice. How do you pray without ceasing? Do you discuss every little decision you face during the day? Do you give God status updates every minute? Do you shut yourself away from human society altogether, and interact only with God? This Orthodox classic… Read More The Way of a Pilgrim

Christianity, Nonfiction

Intercession

There seems to be a fresh spirit blowing through our church. People speak of a discontent with the status quo, and a desire for a fresh infilling of God’s spirit. Every Sunday at the conclusion of the service we are given the opportunity to pray at the altar, and it’s not the slightest bit contrived… Read More Intercession

Christianity, Nonfiction

Hearing God

Dallas Willard’s Hearing God: Developing a Conversational Relationship With God is less a how-to book than a renovation of our commonly accepted ideas about prayer. Quietly but assuredly, it confronts the skepticism that God would speak regularly and understandably to his children. It meditates on the qualities of God’s voice and emphasizes the disciplines that… Read More Hearing God