Thursday, January 28, 2010

Valley of Vision

I finally acquired the collection of Puritan prayers titled, The Valley of Vision. I had already enjoyed the CD from Sovereign Grace by the same title. Though I have read through most of the book quickly, I can tell that I really need to go through it a page at a time and study the deep theology and rich Scripture that went into each prayer. I highly recommend this book for its devotional value. Be warned that the Puritans lived a long time ago, so the language used can be a bit tough. But if you are not deterred by the language, you should be blessed by the well written prayers of people who obviously thought deeply about what they were saying to God. You might think it odd to read prayers, but I still challenge you to try it. I myself was a bit skeptical of the idea, but having begun to read, I've discovered tremendous value in what they wrote.

One thing that I have appreciated are the various ways that each prayer addresses God. For example, here are the titles for God used in the first line of each of the first five prayers:

Three in One, One in Three, God of my salvation
O God whose will conquers all
O Lord God, who inhabitest eternity
O Fountain of all good
My God

Here are just a couple of quotes to whet your appetite:

"May my desires be enlarged and my hopes emboldened,
that I may honor Thee by my entire dependency
and the greatness of my expectation." p. 116

"Teach me the happy art of attending to things temporal
with a mind intent on things eternal." p. 134

"oft-times spiritual comforts are at their highest
when physical well-being is at its lowest." p. 157

"if I do not live a life that satisfies thee,
I shall not live a life that will satisfy myself." p. 166

This book contains a lot of deep theological truth, and presents those truths in some flowery language. It might be difficult to read straight through, but most people should find tremendous blessing from reading one page a day and thinking about what they read.

1 comment:

  1. David, I appreciate your well rounded studies and am delighted that you see the "gift" of written prayer. Your Grandparents being from a liturgical church, understood the benifits of written prayer. While I, from that same litergical background, understand, appreciate and participate in extemperaneous prayer, their have numerous times in my life when reading a prayer by someone else has put into words what I am struggling to say. Thank you for the recommendation