Book Review: “The Prayer of Jesus” by Ken Hemphill
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I was about halfway through this book before I realized I read another book by Mr. Hemphill back in my 20s called “The Names of God”. The little that my poor mind can remember about that review is much of what I liked about this title. He takes important Biblical topics and lays them out in practical and useful ways.
This book is a look at the concept of a true prayer life through the structure of the Lord’s prayer. I know prayer can feel overwhelming, monotonous or hard to connect to emotionally at times, especially if you haven’t been taught about true prayer. I think, in the modern church, we often feel that prayer should come naturally so we’re afraid to ask for help which is silly because the Lord’s Prayer literally came out of the disciples asking for help. They walked with Jesus all the time and still had some questions so we shouldn’t feel any less because we are uncertain.
In this book, Hemphill breaks down the Lord’s Prayer into reasons, realities, responsibilities, requests, reminders and how to live out the prayer. Each with advice and examples of how we can apply Matthew 9:6-13 to our daily lives.
If you are still struggling with the idea that you may need to learn how to talk to God or work on that facet of spirituality, let me ask you a question. Has communication always come perfectly naturally to you in every relationship you have ever had? If your answer is yes, congratulations. Might I suggest making the talk show circuit because you’ve got some special ability. If, like me, the answer is no, then why do we treat our relationship with God any differently? If y’all been around CC for a while you’ve seen the millions of relationship books I’ve reviewed because men and women don’t always communicate the same. Sometimes we need to learn new ways to express ourselves or learn to be more vulnerable with the other person and the same goes for God.
If your prayer life feels empty, stagnant or pointless, might I suggest intentionally working to grow your communication skills with the Father. This book is a great starting place or there are several posts below where I talk about what I’ve learned in my spiritual journey. Prayer can be the most powerful tool you possess if you will only take hold of it.