Current Read: Prayer

in books / faith

I’m sinking my teeth into this one. Richard Foster’s Prayer, Finding the Heart’s True Home.

To pray is to change. This is a great grace. How good of God to provide a path whereby our lives can be taken over by love and joy and peace and patience and kindness and goodness and faithfulness and gentleness and self-control.

I always thought that prayer was my most natural interaction with the Lord. Right before I left high school, I encountered something called intercessory prayer, and I had a teacher that walked with me and helped me grow in understanding of the activity. I stumbled upon Foster’s book after reading his Celebration of Discipline, but never got around to reading it until now. Man, it is rich. And hard to put down.

The book is made up of three sections: Moving Inward, Moving Upward, Moving Outward. Each chapter breaks down a type of prayer, for example: Unceasing Prayer, The Prayer of Rest, Covenant Prayer, Prayer of the Forsaken, Meditative Prayer, etc.

I’m only halfway through the book and I’ve already written so much. On paper and on my heart.

One of my favorite parts of the entire book is how Foster opens it. He speaks of the heart of God being our home, Jesus being the door, and prayer being the key. Home, the place of deepest intimacy, where we know and are known to the fullest. 

He paints this great mental picture of us coming home. To the living room of God’s heart, the kitchen of his friendship, the dining room of his strength, the study of his wisdom, the workship of his creativity, the bedroom of his rest.

There is no mode of life in the world more pleasing and more full of delight than continual conversation with God. Brother Lawrence

He refers to prayer as “making God the companion of my conversations.”

I love this idea of coming home to the heart of God by means of communication with Him. Whether it’s a formation prayer, reading from a book, or a breathe prayer that escapes while I’m driving or hiking.

Sometimes I get hung up on my motives… whether they are true or genuine. He dealt with this also, and spoke to it…

This side of eternity we will never unravel the good from the bad, the pure from the impure. But what I have come to see is that God is big enough to receive us with all our mixture. We do not have to be bright, or pure, or filled with faith, or anything. That is what grace means, and not only are we saved by grace, we live by it as well. And pray by it.

Grace. Coming with empty and open hands.

Coming home.

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