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Writing to God: 40 Days of Praying with My Pen (Active Prayer Series) Paperback – March 9, 2011
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From the Back Cover
"Hackenberg's words have a heartbeat---sometimes they are beautiful and otherworldly; other time they are simple and earthy. When I read her prayers, I'm sure I have just prayed. But she wants me to take up my pen and pray. With a prayer, a Scripture passage, and a task, she gives me a personal invitation and permission to enter the incarnational practice of writing my words to God." - Sybil MacBeth, author of Praying in Color: Drawing a New Path to God
"For some, speaking to God comes naturally---for others, speaking to God feels awkward, especially when we can't find the words or begin to stumble in mid-sentence. Hackenberg offers an alternative way. Writing to God is an expression of deep humility---it seems to say, "If I can write to God, so can you." - Donald capps, Professor of Pastoral Theology (Emeritus), Princeton Theological Seminary
"Inspiration can come at any time or place, awakening the artist, writer, and creator in all of us just by picking up a pen and letting the words flow. Living with this book will make each day a holy adventure." - Bruce Epperly, author of Holy Adventure: 41 Days of Audacious Living
Designed for use during any 40-day period, Writing to God relieves you of the self-conciousness of trying to pray "the right way." Ideal for Lent, this innovative new addition to the "Active Prayer Series" includesa a special section of prayers and prompts for Holy Week and Easter, for anyone using the book during Lent to deepen a life with God.
About the Author
Rev. Rachel G. Hackenberg serves as the pastor of Grace United Church of Christ in Lancaster, PA. A graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary, she authors the blog Faith and Water, and has published prayers in Before the Amen: Creative Resources for Worship.
Top Customer Reviews
Rachel is Pastor of Grace United Church of Christ in Lancaster, PA. I resounded with her blog posts at Faith and Water, and was delighted to be asked to write a review of this book.
Paraclete Press sent me a review copy and I immediately began using the book in my morning prayer practice. I loved it. In the past, I have done Morning Pages (from The Artist's Way), 750Words.com, and Praying in Color. All take me outside of myself in an important way, in that they are either not prayer (the first), or a foreign-to-me way of prayer. This book specifically pairs writing prayer with daily writing activity.
As "a words person," writing my prayers is something I have done all my life, in an attenuated form. That is: If I am praying for you, your name is bound to be written somewhere on my desk, my shopping list, even on my hand. Probably, many places. I explained the practice to a college friend by saying, "by writing you down, I keep you safe." I understand prayer differently, now; there is no guarantee of safety...but writing something, making it The Word, makes it real and embodied for me in a way that other prayer methods have not revealed.
For each of forty days, Rachel pairs a poetical reflection on a daily matter with a scripture, and prompts the reader to write to God to correspond to the passage. I found it a fresh way of seeing scriptures, many of which are so familiar as to be flat.Read more ›
Each day offers a scripture to read, a point of entry via a specific short but effective prayer prompt as well as a sample writing by the author with a one line focus for consideration, such as "God plays a hand in every part of our stories.", "God will refresh your spirit.", and "God will be your quiet strength."
After spending 40 Days (plus) myself on this writing journey I highly recommend this book for your spiritual encouragement, edification and praying life.
I also suggest this as a group endeavor. I had a few others commit to joining me for the duration and believe this would be wonderful for those who would like to have a small group setting. There is a resource available at the publishers website for facilitating these gatherings. Since I did this with a group of bloggers from different states we touched base weekly through the Internet and shared our thoughts in a weekly Blog post setting. I would go through this book again and would love to facilitate a close to home gathering some day!
Rachel writes beautifully with conviction and poetic beauty. Her heartfelt prayers and prose absolutely enhance, not hinder the writing journey for the individual.
As someone who already enjoys writing and journaling prayers, I was not sure I would feel comfortable being led by someone else's perceptions and prompts, daily. I wondered if this would feel forced or contrived. In a word inauthentic. But I found the opposite to be true. It focused my daily prayer time in a new refreshing way.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not what I was expecting. It's more of a compilation of the author's poetry and creative musings than a "how-to" instructional kind of book.Published 8 months ago by Sopapilla
I started a Lenten Facebook group using this book as a guide, and it was meaningful to me and to all those who participated.Published 16 months ago by Amazon Customer
What a great way to change things up. Praying with a theme in mind. It's like journalling, but a little different. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Read for Life
I like it so far, but am still involved in going through the book and writing. It has been a good experience thus far.Published on July 15, 2013 by Lorraine Sell
I was trying to find a nice devotional to use and this was the perfect starter since only 40 days instead of the normal 365. Read morePublished on March 4, 2013 by Rachel
Writing to God gives direction for those of us who aren't are looking for ways to imcrease the power and consistency of our prayers. Read morePublished on September 25, 2012 by His2Bluve
I love to write letters to the Lord. The prayer poems, the Scripture references, and the prayer prompts all serve to open your heart to God and lead you to a place where you can't... Read morePublished on July 17, 2011 by Bearyred