In Constant Prayer – Robert Benson
This entry in Thomas Nelson’s Ancient Practice Series centers on the spiritual discipline of praying the Daily Office, a regularly scheduled set of prayers to be recited by members of the Church. Benson introduces the practice, making it accessible to the great swaths of the Evangelical Church that have moved a good distance from our liturgical heritage. His irenic spirit is evident throughout as he teaches the meaning, practice and application of the Office.
In Constant Prayer stands apart from most other prayer guides currently filling the shelves that focus on attitude, preparation, proper approach and the journaling of answer. Mr. Benson opens the door to a prayer life that encompasses the whole of our day, rather than the prayer by appointment that has become our modern standard. The Daily Office consists of a series of prescribed prayers, praises and scripture readings that are to be lifted to God at specific hours of the day. It is rooted in ancient practice that has struggled to survive in the modern workaday world.
Robert shares the methods and sources of the Office in a most winsome fashion that is appealing to both the contemplatives and the analytics within the Church family. Far from a droll manual of prescriptive steps (since anyone opening the The Book of Common Prayer can figure out the mechanics), he allows us brief glimpses into the benefits that he has accrued as a result of integrating this spiritual discipline into his life. Unlike many prayer works that leave the average Christian feeling as though a life of prayer is unattainable by anyone other than spiritual giants, Benson’s invitation leaves you on the final page unable to wait to become a regular participant in the process.
Thomas Nelson graciously provided this copy for review.