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BodyPrayer: The Posture of Intimacy with God
Random House, Inc / 2005 / Hardcover
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It's possible for prayer to become so routine that it's almost meaningless. Head-oriented prayer can focus on getting the words just right, while leaving out the rest of who you are. BodyPrayer helps you become fully engaged in prayer as you connect with God using more than mere words.
By practicing various postures of prayer; many of them identical to those modeled in Scripture; you will open your life more fully to God. Body prayer involves all of who you are as you enter into communion with God, either individually or with other believers.
Join Christians throughout history who used their entire being as a prayer; in expressions of joy, gratitude, and entreaty, as well as worship and devotion to God. This biblically-based guide will help you practice a richer, more meaningful expression of prayer; one that involves your body as well as your soul.
It’s possible for prayer to become so routine that it’s almost meaningless. Head-oriented prayer can focus on getting the words just right, while leaving out the rest of who you are. BodyPrayer helps you become fully engaged in prayer as you connect with God using more than mere words.
By practicing various postures of prayer–many of them identical to those modeled in Scripture–you will open your life more fully to God. Body prayer involves all of who you are as you enter into communion with God, either individually or with other believers.
Join Christians throughout history who used their entire being as a prayer–in expressions of joy, gratitude, and entreaty, as well as worship and devotion to God. This biblically based guide will help you practice a richer, more meaningful expression of prayer–one that involves your body as well as your soul.
This is prayer that goes deeper than words.
Engage your physical senses in a spiritual discipline…
If your spirituality lacks passion, you can find new life in the ancient practice of body prayer. When you adopt postures that express the burdens of your heart, you bring all of who you are into God’s presence.
BodyPrayer invites twenty-eight ways to involve your entire being as you connect with God. Whether you pray in submission with forehead touching the ground, or in exaltation with arms outstretched and eyes raised to heaven, you will find new spiritual vitality in prayer that expresses all of who you are.
Avoid the recitation of empty words and move your prayer life into the realm of whole-life engagement. When you use your body to express what words often fail to say, you are drawn closer to God. Body, soul, and spirit.
Doug Pagitt is the founding pastor of Solomon’s Porch, an emerging church in Minneapolis, and the author of Reimagining Spiritual Formation. A former director of Young Leader Networks for the Leadership Network, he is a leading voice in Emergent and a cutting-edge thinker in the emerging church movement. Coauthor Kathryn Prill is a poet/writer and a contributor to Reimagining Spiritual Formation.
Pagitt (Preaching Re-Imagined) and Prill provide ideas and specific guidelines for praying using the body-i.e., praying for strength with your hands crossed over your chest or for healing with your palms out, facing up-with a goal of "help[ing] you connect with God at every level of your life-body, mind, and spirit." The 30 short sections of the book provide instructions for specific prayer postures, each with some introductory comments, a prayer, instructions, and room for journaling. Each posture is illustrated with a full-page drawing (which, unfortunately, does not always exactly match the written instructions). Though Christian, the book is informed by an almost New Age sensibility; many of the prayers sound more like self-focused meditations than requests for something from God, and often skirt around the issues they're supposed to address, for example, the prayer for healing: "The power and love of God/ Keeps us from falling/ Washes us clean/ And places us in the kingdom as pure beings." Scripture references are included in the notes but not in the text itself. Some conservative evangelicals will likely be uncomfortable with the book, while those in the emergent church may welcome new physical approaches to prayer. (Nov. 15) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
“We are called not only to pray without ceasing, but also to pray with our whole selves. BodyPrayer is a gentle guide to doing just that. Simultaneously subversive and traditional, the logic of BodyPrayer is holistic, anti-Gnostic, and potentially transformative.”
–Lauren F. Winner, author of Girl Meets God and Mudhouse Sabbath
“By sharing the rich prayer life of his Minneapolis church with the world, Doug Pagitt reflects a whole new way of looking at ‘church’–less in terms of ‘what is your mission statement’ or ‘statement of faith’ and more ‘what are your practices and embodied rituals that are uniquely yours?’ BodyPrayer is one of the first books to appreciate that embodied mediation is a key process by which theology is communicated and lived.”
–Leonard Sweet, author of Out of the Question…Into the Mystery and the trilogy AquaChurch, SoulTsunami, and SoulSalsa
“You can’t get any more biblical than this! God created us to worship Him with our bodies. Because of the Fall, God became incarnate to restore our worship of Him. Because of a body that suffered on the cross and a body that rose from the grave, God redeems us to worship Him–not in some disembodied soul but in, with, and through our bodies. BodyPrayer makes it real.”
–Robert Webber, Myers Professor of Ministry at Northern Seminary, author of The Younger Evangelicals
“This small guide to physical prayer is huge in its message. Doug Pagitt and Kathryn Prill here return the body to its original place in, and importance to, Christian worship. We should all be grateful.”
–Phyllis Tickle, compiler of The Divine Hours
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