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Monday, January 7, 2013

Very Short Review: "Dawn to Dark: A Book of Christian Prayer"

{This will only take 2.35 minutes to read}

Dawn to Dark: A Book of Christian Prayer
R. Douglas Jones
The House Studio
PO Box 419527
Kansas City, MO 64141
www.thehousestudio.com
ISBN: 978-0-8341-2825-5; $14.99
Copyright 2012
Reviewed by: Dr. Michael Philliber for Deus Misereatur

Useful Utility: 4 stars out of 5

The value of having some type of order in daily prayer has been noticed for centuries. From Sacramentaries to Breviaries, Christians have been churning out prayer books that are meant to help structure daily prayer. R. Douglas Jones has added a short work to the mix with his recent 286 page paperback, "Dawn to Dark: A Book of Christian Prayer."

Jones covers two weeks of praying that pays attention to the "hours": "Prayer at Dawn", "Prayer at Daylight", and "Prayer at Dusk." The internal order of each session of prayer is fairly standard, including opening prayer, confession of sin, Psalm reading, praise (normally a printed traditional hymn), profession of faith, Scripture reading (there is a suggested lectionary for the whole year in the back), meditation, prayer for others, the  Lord's Prayer, and closing prayer. Some of the prayers are the author's, and some come from other traditional sources. The Psalm readings are from various translations.

The author has also put together a couple of other sections toward the latter portion of "Dawn to Dark." One  lays out a week of night time prayer. Another is a short segment for those who find themselves rushed and having very little time to spend in prayer. There is also a piece for changing the daily prayers up following the Church calendar. And then finally there are prayers for various situations.

The book appears to be bigger than it really is. Most of it is spent on the two weeks of prayer, and is not too terribly technical. In fact, it is quite user friendly. The one drawback I see is the use of multiple translations of Scripture used throughout. For the sake of retention it might be more helpful if Jones had stuck with one version. Nevertheless, if you're looking for an aid to your personal prayers, or a way to focus your group while on retreat, this would be a delightful resource. I recommend "Dawn to Dark."

Mike

2 comments:

LARRY PEARSON said...

i like it dr. mike!

Doug said...

Thanks so much for taking time to review, Dawn to Dark. I appreciate the fact you were willing to take the time to write up your impressions and reactions to this Book of Prayer.

I am grateful for your helpful feedback on the drawback of utilizing a variety of translations for the reading from the Psalms. That is a great piece of feedback. If/when I am able to go to a second printing I will definitely pitch that to the publisher to revise that aspect of the book.

In one Peace.

Doug

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