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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Book Review: "Amish Prayers" (Beverly Lewis)

TITLE: Amish Prayers
COMPILED BY: Beverly Lewis
PUBLISHER: Bloomington, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 2011, (141pp).

There is a flurry of all things Amish these days, especially in the publishing world. In businesses, you have books like 'Success Made Simple.' In relationships, 'Amish Grace' places healing and forgiveness as key attributes to a world needing love. There are fiction stories based on the Amish as well, like "An Amish Love." There is also one for Christmas too, called "An Amish Christmas." Not to be left behind, there are also cookbooks on Amish cooking! Beverly Lewis has written one of them. In this book, Beverly Lewis introduces us to Amish spirituality via prayers collected, and translated from the original German Das Vaterunser.

The book is a collection of prayers based on 12 themes. It begins with a new day prayer, and ends with a set of evening prayers. In between are prayers for divine guidance, gratitude, repentance, comfort, praise, strength, purity of heart, unity, humility, and submission. Undergirding all of these prayers are constant affirmations of the Lord's Prayer. It is hoped that the book can be used both in private devotions, as well as public worship.

Book Saint Comments
Lewis is one of the most popular writers of Christian fiction books. Most of her stories have a flavour of Amish or Anabaptist background. This book of Amish Prayers is no different even though it is of a non-fiction genre. What makes the book special is that the prayers are collected out of her personal connection with the Amish community, and her personal friends. The simple pictures and illustrations throughout the book makes this book a very pleasant gift that can be given to friends.

Every page is anchored with a biblical verse for reflection and meditation. There are no long-winded explanations. Just prayers.  In contrast to some books on prayer that tries to explain and provides long introductions, this book allows the reader to just PRAY it. Every prayer begins with an acknowledgement of WHO one is praying to. Every prayer ends with a verse from the Bible for meditation.

While it is possible to simply pray according to the theme one needs, this book can also be used to teach prayer through praying. Like learning to ride a bicycle. One cannot simply talk about riding. One needs to ride, and learn through falling. Likewise, Christians learn to pray through praying, and falling on our knees. Sometimes, we may need to encounter failings ourselves, to appreciate the depth of prayers and humility. Don't just read this book. Pray it.


This book is supplied to me free by Bethany House Publishers for the purpose of review. There is no obligation on my part to give a positive review. All opinions expressed are freely mine.

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