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Wonder, Fear, and Longing: A Book of Prayers Paperback – August 31, 2009


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Wonder, Fear, and Longing: A Book of Prayers + Messy Spirituality + Dangerous Wonder (with Discussion Guide)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan/Youth Specialties; 1 edition (August 31, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310283604
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310283607
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 4.9 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #767,955 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Every heart feels wonder. Every heart knows fear. Every heart aches with longing. Awed, we whisper, 'Thank you.' Frightened, we cry, 'Mercy.' Yearning we plead, 'Show me the way.' Because the truth is, no matter who you are, every heart needs prayer. This is a prayer book. A book to seduce, cajole, entice, and encourage your heart into prayer. More than a book to be read, this is a book to be explored. It is a book of stories, divine poetry, holy verses, mystical inspirations, prayerful imaginings, meditative practices, and spiritual exercises that seek to uncover the hidden communication between you and God. As you read and explore more about love, longing, fear, suffering, compassion, rest, reflection, passion, wonder, and gratitude you'll be invited to discover prayer within the various moods, attitudes, and experiences that we human beings often find ourselves in. It's a book to be used, flipped through, tested, experimented with, and then set aside. It is a book that asks you time after time to stop and listen, turn and welcome the silent love of God. The hope of this book isn't to teach you anything. The point of this book is to encourage you to give yourself to God---your anger, your fear, your gratitude, your curiosity---your real self to the real God, because then (and only then) will your heart find peace (even in the midst of wonder, fear, and longing). Because every heart needs prayer. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Mark Yaconelli is the co-founder and co-director of Triptykos School of Compassion. The author of Downtime, Contemplative Youth Ministry, and Growing Souls, Mark lives in Oregon with his wife and three children.

More About the Author

Mark Yaconelli is the co-founder and co-director of Triptykos School of Compassion. The author of Downtime, Contemplative Youth Ministry, and Growing Souls, Mark lives in Oregon with his wife and three children.

Customer Reviews

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I am so glad I picked up this book.
Jerusha
With all the easy and provoking exercises herein, this would also be hugely useful in developing satisfying and forward-moving spiritual practices.
Stephen Richmond
The chapters are broken down in differant sections for study and contemplation. scripture, meditation, contemplation and such.
4fabfelines

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By W. Easley VINE VOICE on December 11, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"Wonder, Fear, and Longing - a Book of Prayers" is an extraordinary Christian text. Mark Yaconelli's book is a book of meditations that entice us to prayer. Yaconelli shows sensitivity, wisdom, and spirituality gained from life experience in this new book of prayer

In this text, Yaconelli presents heartfelt reflections enhanced by quotations from many spiritual writers, such as Richard Rohr, Thomas Merton, Catherine of Siena, and Reinhold Niebuhr. His reflections and meditations are filled with quotations from the Scriptures.

Yaconelli organized the book into ten chapters that are each a different "aspect" of our existence. The chapters are Love, Longing, Fear, Suffering, Compassion, Rest, Reflection, Passion, Wonder, and Gratitude. Each chapter presents reflections followed by: scripture, prayer, meditation, and contemplation.

Looking at the list above, one may be tempted to wonder if this is an elementary book. It is not. The chapter titles may appear simple, but the wisdom within each "aspect" is astute and impressive.

Yaconelli's work is wonderful spirituality. He clearly understands the message that Jesus taught. He helps us attempt to live as Jesus lived, in compassion and love for our fellow human beings.

Yaconelli's meditations on suffering are especially beneficial. He advises that our prayer often begins in suffering and if we give our suffering to God we learn surrender which leads to growth in strength, peace and love.

I especially like the following Yaconelli statements.

"It is our real selves (not our "spiritual selves) whom God loves and desires most deeply."

Our first struggle is to "receive and return God's love."

Prayer does not allow us to "control life's outcomes."

"To pray is to be vulnerable."

Often churches seem "averse to human suffering."

I highly recommend this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By TheProf VINE VOICE on December 17, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Mark Yaconelli has a unique perspective and his writing makes you think about things in a new way. I picked this book up in anticipation after reading his "Contemplative Youth Ministry" which offered a very different perspective on running a youth department. So I was eager to read his perspectives on prayer.

He does not disappoint. Each chapter is simply written but full of profound concepts. The best part about Yaconelli's writings is that he encourages you to stop and meditate rather than write a "how-to" manual. My church has done a lot with the concept of prayer and exploring the many avenues of prayer so I am doubly impressed that Yaconelli gave me more to think about and consider in my prayer journey.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I am so glad I picked up this book. By the end of the introduction, I was choked up and felt like this book had the potential to inspire and guide the reader looking to be led to a deeper level of prayer. This sentiment from page 6 says it all: "The hope of this book isn't to teach you new ideas about prayer, the hope of this book is that you will pray." This book does just that, helping the reader to discover how they want to best approach God in prayer through everything from love to suffering to gratitude and fear. The author sets the tone for the book beautifully right off the bat, asking questions to already get you thinking about your prayers and your ability to express yourself through them to God. He asks the reader to visualize they are in the private company of somebody who has perfect love for you, who is safe and comfortable to be with, who looks at you like no other... Then he asks you to ponder how you'd speak to the person. What would you say? What would you ask? He asks if you'd share hopes and fantasies, pain and suffering, if you'd ask for help, or just enjoy the feelings that being around this person would raise up within you. He presents you with the questions, then the rest of the book presents you with ways to find the answer to those questions in a way that's beautiful and meaningful, not at all preachy or self-serving, yet allows for total personal freedom to truly express oneself.

The book is divided into 10 common emotions or situations that are probably among the most common reasons to pray; love, longing, fear, suffering, compassion, rest, reflection, passion, wonder, and gratitude. The chapters each start with a passage from the Bible related to the subject of the chapter, then reflections from the author on the emotion.
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By Yoomi VINE VOICE on January 28, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I've read many books by Mark Yaconelli, Max Lucado, and other inspirational writers. While I think that they have wonderful things to say and a way that may be less intimidating, I wish there were more references to the Bible. Each chapter in this book covers a different reason to pray. All good reasons: love, longing, fear, suffering, compassion, rest, reflection, passion, wonder, and of course, gratitude. After a short story to illustrate the reason for prayer, there are a few verses. Then another story and exercises to help you "contemplate" what you've just read. While there are many questions that will make you stop and think, I wanted more stories about the people in the Bible who prayed. For example, in the Rest chapter, there is a short paragraph about Jesus:

"Why did Jesus rest? Why did he withdraw from crowds of people desperate for healing? we know from Scripture that Jesus rested in order to commune with God. For Jesus (even Jesus!), prayer was necessary in order to sustain and deepen his capacity for love."

One of the short verses that follows refers to Jesus's need for rest and prayer. I didn't love the book and it wasn't until I was almost finished that I realized why. Prayer and Bible study go hand in hand. I speak to God through prayer. He speaks to me through the Bible. Prayer isn't just about me and what I need. I do need all of the things Yaconelli emphasizes here and I don't disagree with him on any point. I guess I just wish there was less Mark Yaconelli and more about who we're praying to. The words printed in the Bible transcend time. The words printed here will fade. I might recommend "Wonder, Fear, and Longing" as a supplementary book but with some instructions.
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