Monday, October 18, 2010
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Monday, October 04, 2010
When our good friends recommended Paul Miller’s A Praying Life: Connecting With God in a Distracting World and told us that it changed their lives, I couldn’t help but feel skeptical. Prayer has always eluded me. When I pray, I feel simultaneously inadequate and manipulative. My mind wanders and I spend about 45 seconds praying before I start thinking about my to do list for the day and then I leave feeling overwhelmed and guilty. In the first pages, Miller presupposes all the questions I ask and actually articulates all of my frustrations before stating: "Praying exposes how self-preoccupied we are and uncovers our doubts. It was easier on our faith not to pray.”
Oh how refreshing! Oh how honest! Oh, how very true and yet so very problematic. After conceding all of the frustrations we have all experienced when it comes to prayer, Miller turns the whole ordeal on its head and reminds us of who we really are and what prayer is really about: being in constant communion with our loving and gracious Father. He compares prayer to “dinner with a friend,” and exposes the ridiculous way we come before God with pharisaical tendencies or false humility. He exposes our cynicism and lacking faith. And he exposes our laziness and our fear.
Were it not for the many and enthusiastic recommendations to read A Praying Life, I might have missed out on this gem. It has changed the way I see prayer. It has changed the way I see myself. It has changed the way I know God. It comes with my highest recommendation and my humble appreciation to Mr. Miller for writing so honestly and so interestingly. It is a fast and practical read. It was well worth my precious time, and it will be worth yours.