Author: Ken Wilson
Hardcover: 208 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Recent studies in the field of neuroscience have shown that prayer does affect the our brain and over periods of time, prayer can change our brains. This has led author Ken Wilson to make that claim that we are “mystically wired.” (3) Expanding on that, Wilson claims that we are “adapted or designed to reach beyond the limits of the ingrown self to connect with the wonder of life beyond the self, including the life of God.” (3)
After years of prayer and studying prayer, Wilson concludes three things,
First, it is possible to learn to pray in new ways; we can fall into praying ruts, but we don’t have to say there. Second, the kind of praying that was once thought to be reserved for unusually gifted (or afflicted) people called mystics is more accessible to ordinary people than previously thought. And third, the pressures of modern life, despite the modern conveniences, have heightened our need to learn and practice some of the ancient, biblical prayer disciplines. (10)
The book is divided up into two parts. In part one, Wilson outlines his understanding of what it means to be mystically wired; looking at why we have issues when it comes to prayer and his own story. In part two, Wilson discusses how we can change our prayer life for the better.
For me, the high point of the book was chapter seven because it resonated with my own life. I tried the whole setting 20-30 minutes aside each day for prayer…and I failed miserably. Apparently this was too much too quickly for me. What I needed, according to Wilson was to “establish the patter of two or three shorter prayer segments throughout the day” (118) starting with one segment daily. I should have taken it slower and established the habit of shorter prayer segments before attempting a long prayer setting.
I like that Wilson does not frown upon using prayer aids such as The Book of Common Prayer and The Divine Hours: A Manual for Prayer (Volume 1, Volume 2, Volume 3). I use the four volume For All the Saints or The Treasury of Daily Prayer. I also like that he takes the slow and steady approach.
Overall, I highly recommend this book. I found it to be a fairly easy read and thought that Wilson offered concrete ideas and ways for one to begin to have a meaningful prayer life. This book is a great resource for any Christian looking to improve their prayer life.
I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. Providing me a free copy in no way guarantees a favorable review. The opinions expresses in this review are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”