Friday, July 21, 2017

Praying With Eyes Wide Open

It all began by accident.  A father and daughter are out on a walk.  They decide to pray together and in the next moment father knocks over daughter and they both fall to the ground. It turned out that when he began to pray father closed his eyes, as most if not all Christians do.  Obviously, it's a bit difficult to walk with your eyes closed.   However, this form of prayer provided a discovery for father and daughter - praying with eyes wide open.

That story sets up the premise of Sherry Harney's new book on prayer.  She makes the convincing point that praying with eyes open can add a new dimension to a person prayer life.  She recounts all the different ways that God's people pray.  But there is not one Biblical admonition that one must pray with eyes closed.  Praying with opened eyes engages the senses in an entirely different way.

Harney writes in the introduction: "Praying with our eyes open...allows us to see what is happening around us and engage in prayer in new ways.  Rather than closing our eyes to block out the world, we open our eyes, like Jesus did.  We see the need and pain as well as the beauty and joy all around us. What we see shapes our prayers."

Harney writes in an easy engaging style.  The book is filled with Scriptural references to prayer and also includes a number of stories about people who found that praying with eyes opened enhanced their prayer life.  If your prayer and devotional time has become routine and humdrum, you just might be blessed by "Praying With Eyes Wide Open."