Item description for The Word is Very Near You: A Guide to Praying with Scripture by Martin L. Smith...
An introduction to the practice of prayer with Scripture, this book includes a number of themes for prayer with suggested passages for meditation. Martin Smith believes that prayer is not an act we perform, but rather is a response to God s reaching out to us. Through scriptural passages this book shows how the Bible can guide our prayer response and lead us from conversational prayer to meditative, receptive prayer with Scripture. This book is ideal for an ongoing Bible, prayer, or discernment group."
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Studio: Cowley Publications
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.5" Width: 5.58" Height: 0.6" Weight: 0.73 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 2001
Publisher Cowley Publications
ISBN 0936384816 ISBN13 9780936384818
Availability 0 units.
More About Martin L. Smith
MARTIN L. SMITH is an Episcopal priest and the author of Reconciliation: Preparing for Confession.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Word is Very Near You: A Guide to Praying with Scripture?
one of the best books of meditative prayer Oct 25, 2007
This is one my favorite books on meditative prayer. Assigned by my spiritual directors program, it was a real delight to read and incorporate in my daily prayer life. The first couple of chapters are worth the price of the book. Unlike another reviewer, I did not find any "theological jargon" in the book at all! Nor is it "episcopal" (by the way, it was assigned by a catholic, and I'm methodist)! I can't help but wonder if the prior reviewer was talking about another book.
The first few chapters describe our approach and connection to God in prayer, God's initiative in all prayer, our experience of God and practical examples of what that looks like, including tips on where/when and incorporating the body in prayer. The next few chapters describe (without using these theological words), the practice of lectio divina, ignatian prayer (entering the stories), and praying with icons/word pictures. Each kind is described in step-by-step fashion, followed by interviews from new practitioners so that you can get a realistic feel for what that meditative prayer practice is like. The second half of the book is basically a mini topical concordance, where various scriptures are listed by topic as an aid for choosing in prayer. I found this section less helpful, because I really didn't need it. But for those who really don't know what scriptures to start with in meditative prayer, it's a great section.
More theological jargon Dec 19, 2006
This book is just more of the same theological jargon of the Episcopal church. No substance or meat. This is the view of our entire women's study group. Don't waste your time.
Uniquely helpful Apr 1, 2002
This book was recommended (and loaned)to me by my pastor, and I rapidly decided that I needed my own copy. It provides instruction on a number of different kinds of prayer that can be done using scripture that is clear, succinct and helpful, but it also provides a lot more than that. The introduction has a good discussion on the hows and whys of scriptural prayer, and the back of the book has extensive lists of scripture readings broken into topical sections so that those who are fairly new to studying the bible, can nonetheless find appropriate passages for in depth prayer on a variety of topics. Highly recommended for anyone interested in increasing the depth of their prayer life.
a helpful guide to meditative prayer Nov 4, 1998
Our adult Christian formation (Christian education in some churches)class has been using this book for a series of discussions and practice in meditative prayer. All participants seem to like the author's style of writing and to find something useful in the text. We also keep hearing that it is worth re-reading and keeping on hand to refer to again and again.
The author, Martin Smith, SSJE, is an Episcopalian and superior of the Society of St. John the Evangelist. He explains in a clear and personal manner different approaches to prayer using scripture as the basis. Some in our group are used to putting Old Testament lessons into story form for the child-friendly service at our church and like the chapter on putting one's self into a Bible story (a participant at the Last Supper, a witness to the Crucifixion, the woman at the well, Martha or Mary preparing dinner for the Lord or sitting at his feet to hear him speak,etc.) Others benefit from trying to focus on a word or phrase or short sentence from the Bible as the center of a meditative prayer session. Still others tried focusing on a symbol or image which has importance in scripture (water, tongues of fire, staff, shepherd, oil for lighting lamps, etc.) We are next going to try a group meditation. For individuals or groups seeking an enriched prayer experience, this book is recommended.