Yours Is the Day, Lord, Yours Is the Night: A Morning and Evening Prayer Book
by Jeanie and David Gushee
I didn’t grow up in a liturgical church, so the idea of using a prayer book, such as Yours Is the Day, Lord, Yours Is the Night: A Morning and Evening Prayer Book, is new to me. In fact, it’s really a bit revolutionary. I’ve always attended churches that emphasized personal faith, spontaneous prayers, and emotional involvement or passion. In other words, spiritual disciplines that help my faith remain fresh, alive and real.
For that, I’m truly thankful. I’m not about to abandon any of that. But about a month ago I began contemplating the beauty and value of using the prayers of saints throughout history, joining with believers who prayed passionately to God for hundreds of years.
The back copy of this prayer book emphasizes this: “They are intended not to replace your personal, spontaneous prayers but to serve as a springboard for them.” Jeanie Gushee began the project simply by filling her own personal journals with prayers that she had collected from various sources. She and her husband now present those same prayers to us for use in our own personal devotions.
Each day includes a brief morning prayer and an evening prayer from a great variety of sources: Caedmon, The Bible itself, the Book of Common Prayer, Augustine, Charles Spurgeon, John Calvin, Alexander Pope, poets, kings, saints, and pastors. The entries are organized around the liturgical calendar.
I am reminded continually that it is important to remember that salvation isn’t new to 21st century Christians. Connecting with the past reminds us anew that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). It reminds me that God cared for His people since the creation of the world and that my testimony of His faithfulness joins with the testimonies of believers for thousands of years.
A prayer book such as this teaches me that God is bigger than me and bigger than my brief time on this earth. For some, it may give you the words to pray when you can’t seem to find them or it may help you establish a new discipline of prayer in a new year. For all of us, these prayers are simply a starting point, a way to spur us on to more disciplined prayer and a way to encourage our own spontaneous prayers.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed 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.”