Friday, December 16, 2011

Book Review: Everyday Prayers by Scotty Smith

I received Everyday Prayers: 365 Days to a Gospel-Centered Faith by Scotty Smith unexpectedly. It's funny how life works sometimes. Let me explain. I found a gift card in my dresser from a local Christian book store in my town. I figured it didn't have any money left on it, but to my surprise I found out I had $13 on it! After looking around the bookstore I decided to get this book. I'm so glad I did!

Everyday Prayers is also a book that Scotty did not intend to write. He started writing these prayers as a new way to do his "quiet times". Scotty then began to share his prayers with his friends, then some members of his church family asked him about his prayer devotionals, then he started a small email distribution list, and then a blog. Now we have this book.

The main point of all these prayers is what Scotty calls, "praying the gospel". This book is a passionate plea to understand and experience more of the gospel of God's grace. While many devotional books focus on what we need to do for Jesus, this book focuses on what Jesus did for us. To quote Scotty, "I intentionally always come back to who we are in Christ and who he is in us. Like Luther said, we need the basics of the gospel every day because we forget the gospel every day."

What I also loved about this book was that his prayers came out of meditating on a specific passage of Scripture. At the top of every page is a passage from God's word and then the prayer follows. I have benefited the most from this book when I actually get my Bible out and read the passage for myself first and then read the prayer.

I so agree with the other reviewer who said this book is a gift for the church. I have gone through Spurgeon's Morning and Evening devotional and it was a blessing, but I believe this book has the potential to do greater things.

I know we all live busy lives. But reading one of these prayers everyday will only take you 15 to 30 minutes depending on how deep you go with it. You will be encouraged in the gospel of Jesus, you will treasure Jesus more, and you will long for Jesus to come back triumphantly to reign forever with his bride!

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