Dec 9, 2010

Review of In Constant Prayer by Robert Benson

The Bible gives us the instruction to pray continually. Many struggle with the idea of how this is achieved. One answer, according to Robert Benson, is in the ancient practice of fixed hour prayer. This practice, also known by names like liturgy of the hours, divine hours, or divine office, has been practice from the before the time of Christ. Jews practiced praying a certain times everyday. This practice carried on into the early church's practices and continued on through the centuries of church history. Benson points out that it hasn't been until recently that much of the church has not practiced fixed hour prayer. In Constant Prayer is the first step into a life built around the rhythms of praying the divine hours. Benson encourages, and sometimes pushes, the reader to a life bathed in prayer. This book teaches the reader how to take the first steps to joining in with all the saints past and present who have built their lives around the rhythms of fixed hour prayers.

This book is part of a series about the ancient practices of the church and is a great way to by introduced into the the ancient practice of fixed hour prayer. While he does not give a complete history of the practice, he spends the majority of the book sharing the affects of prayer in his life and others. This book is a testimony to why we should be participating in some form in regular prayer. Benson does include a sample "office" and a step by step explanation of what part of the office is. If you are interested in the practice of fixed hour prayer and would like to read about it first, this is fantastic place to start. It is easy to read and not very long. I would not recommend this for someone who wants a history of the divine office or who is ready to pray through the office, but this book is great for an introduction into the practice.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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