Praying the Psalms by Ben Patterson: A Review

978-1-4964-1598-1Learn to speak the language of God’s own heart.
Have you ever tried to pour out your deepest feelings to God, only to discover that you can’t find the words? We want to feel connected to God, but sometimes it seems like we’re not speaking the same language.

There is no better place in all of Scripture than Psalms to learn to be with God. Praying the Psalms includes 50 selections from this book—songs of praise, cries for help, glad rejoicings, and humble offerings—accompanied by inspirational devotions that will open a divine window in your prayer life.

Adapted from God’s Prayer Book; now in a deluxe LeatherLike binding.

My Review: First and foremost, this book is gorgeous. It’s beautiful leather-like binding is elegant and this book is perfectly sized. It would make a wonderful and thoughtful gift. Not only is it gorgeous, it also lives up to it’s tagline “Drawing near to the heart of God”. This little book has a chapter devoted to each of the 150 Psalms. There are several pages focused on each Psalm, that explain the heart and intent of each and encourage the reader in how to powerfully pray each one. There is also a topical index located in the back to easily search for topics for specific needs.

This book would be excellent for anyone who desires to dig deeper into the Psalms and to draw closer to God in prayer.

*I received a copy of this book free of charge from Tyndale Blog Network  in exchange for my honest review.

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Journaling the Bible

Recently, my dear friend Amy and I both acquired journaling bibles. Shortly after this, we felt inspired to start a weekly scripture journaling that we would share via Instagram. We’ve only been at it for a few short weeks, but I have been so blessed by it already.

I’ve never been a good notetaker or journaler, and it’s always been challenging for me to “write” in my bible. However, since taking the plunge into this, I have felt so inspired. Journaling the bible has stirred up so much in me, and it’s caused me to see the word in a fresh new way. I feel so blessed to be on this journey with my precious friend.

I thought I would share an example of what we are doing. If you are on Instagram, you can follow our posts by searching for #ourheartshisword #weeklyword

This week’s word comes from the book of Isaiah, chapter 43 verse 19.

Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.

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This week, I felt drawn to Isaiah 43:19. In this passage, Israel is in captivity. They’ve lost everything and their faith is shaken. They’ve failed God time and again. Even though God has done incredible things in their past, they need a renewal of faith for the future. They need to look ahead, instead of to the past.

Often times, we get too focused on the past. Our failures, mistakes and disappointments. It’s so hard for us to look ahead and to move forward. We have to quit looking behind us and focus our attention on what lies ahead. We need to fix our eyes on what God wants to do in our future. Dwelling on the past will keep us from moving forward with the new thing God wants to do in us! Maybe you have regrets, constantly asking yourself “What was I thinking?” Don’t let the past keep you trapped. It’s time to rise up and move on. Regret won’t move you forward. It will keep you stuck in the past. Learn what you can from your past, and begin to move forward with God. The old is passed away. The former things are gone.

But, God wants to do a new thing in our lives! Do you not perceive it? He wants to grow you. He wants to renew you. He wants to show you himself in a new way. It’s so easy to get comfortable in our walk with God. To stay with what is familiar and safe. To say, “God has done so much with me “here” where I am. Why bother moving?” We can easily get “stuck” where we are. But, just like we need to move beyond the mistakes and failures of our past, we also have to be continually moving forward in our faith. We can’t stay where we are. Even if it’s comfortable there. God wants to spring up something new in us! What new thing does God want to do in your life?

My prayer for those of us journaling this verse and all of us reading this, is that we would be people who look ahead with anticipation. That we would be movable and ready to go wherever God takes us. May we leave the past behind us, and spring forth with God! May we grow and flourish as we fully embrace the new things God wants to do in and through us!