Trouble praying? Prayer journaling, a book review + giveaway!

Disclaimer: Family Christian provided me with a copy of “Praying the Bible” for review, and they are providing one to the giveaway winner (see below).This review and all the thoughts and opinions contained in it are honest and my own. This post contains Family Christian Affiliate Links. 

In his most recent book “Praying The Bible”, Donald S. Whitney, offers readers a method of prayer that draws from the bible, particularly the psalms to pray through the regular concerns, thanksgivings, and petitions we have each day. Though I was a little unsure at first, (perhaps because we are different denominations), I found the book very clear, and his method was very fulfilling.

praying the bible review donald don s whitney s. how to pray prayer christian faith catholic biblical oh the simple joys

Whitney is a professor of biblical spirituality and associate dean at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. Whitney talks like a pastor, but his speech is clear. You don’t have to have a deep understanding of theology to read his book — he writes at a level that is easy for all to understand and so for some, this will be an easy read. That’s okay though, the whole point is to get you praying the method right? And his method was one that I enjoyed very much.

Though I’m not terribly familiar with the concept of prayer in other denominations, I believe that most Christian faiths including Catholics would find that this method of prayer fits in with their beliefs. In fact, since you have to choose part of the bible to pray over, Catholics (or others) could even use the daily reading, especially the responsorial psalm, as the chosen passage to pray through.

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Stained glass craft for all ages

stained glass craft toddler homeschool activities religious christian faith pre-school art

My daughter has recently been very interested in stained glass, so for our morning homeschool activity we made a “stained glass” window for our house. I’ve seen this done with colored tissue paper, or translucent paints on glass, but we did the quick and easy toddler version of a stained glass craft with supplies I had around the house.

what you’ll need:

  • saran wrap
  • tempera or acrylic paints
  • masking tape or painter’s tape
  • piece of paper
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Why I remain a Catholic – Michelle from Oh The Simple Joys

A recent pew report showed that the number of people who call themselves Catholic is decreasing, and so Elizabeth Scalia of Patheos challenged all Catholic writers and bloggers to tell the world: why do YOU remain a Catholic? I love challenges like this, and a lot of you have been asking me about my faith recently so I thought that this would be a great way to let you into my little world of faith.

Here’s why I remain a Catholic:

I just got here

Yep, I’m a convert! I was born to a Presbyterian father and a Jewish mother, and grew up in a household with two faiths. (In fact we still celebrate many Jewish holidays, or incorporate aspects of that culture into our lives. Our Easter table had kugel on it, our Christmas tree always gets a Star of David ornament.)

So Jewish and Protestant roots, then I went to a Quaker high school. In college, I searched and searched, and finally found my faith. I took classes for over a year, learned all that I could, and was finally baptized, confirmed, and had my first Holy Communion three years ago in 2012. Though I’m out of that first little “honeymoon phase”, I still feel new and excited about my faith, and I have a ton more to learn.

christmas menorah red and green chanukah oh the simple joys catholic jew religion faith
Tacky? Perhaps, but I love our red and green menorah, and the ways we honored (and blended) our Jewish and Christian heritage.
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Keep kids in church: my case against “Cry Rooms”

keep children in church not the cry room or religious ed to build faith

Let me paint you a picture of church with my toddler. It’s usually just the two of us. Here’s how today went:

Miriam thinks the kneeler is a balance beam. Okay, I can handle that. Whoops, elbow’s getting too close to the the people in front of us who are kinda rustling like “what just touched me?” Time for a new game. Try to escape the pew! Testing the limits of how far I’ll let her go… out of the pew? One step? Up the aisle? No? Okay, after stomping and grumping, time to meet and explore the people next to us. I don’t want Miriam to distract them from worshipping so I pull her back into my lap. Ah, nice. For five seconds, then it’s onto exploring the people behind us! And now they are kneeling so their faces are REALLY CLOSE, HI!!! And so on, and so forth. It is HARD.

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