Book review and giveaway: We Pray With Her

Since last Advent I have been searching for a new devotional book. Some that I looked at were too light, while others were a bit more academic than I wanted. Many were focused solely on personal holiness, and a few were so social justice-oriented that I had to stretch to apply the readings to my everyday life.

And then, We Pray With Her was published this fall. I was already looking forward to getting a copy, because some of the friends and colleagues I respect most contributed to the book. The first night I opened it up, I felt seen and understood. Here were young clergywomen speaking to the threads that I find myself pulling on daily in my ministry, parenting, and civic participation: call, courage, struggle, resistance, and persistence. In these 100 devotions I found good biblical scholarship applied to the challenges I face in this stage of life and work. The pieces invited me to tend to my spirit, then turned me outward to enact in the world my faith in God’s love and abundance.

In addition to the devotions, there are standalone prayers tailored to situations young women often find themselves in. Some center on choices and realities associated with parenting, such as being asked – AGAIN – why we don’t have children, struggling with infertility, experiencing post-partum depression, and dealing with the everyday challenges of parenting. There are family-related prayers that are not child-centered, including muddling through the illness of a parent or a divorce. Other prayers focus on professional concerns like preparing spiritually for interviews, difficult meetings, position changes, and returning to work after vacation. And there are some prayers that speak to the overall tenor of our lives: prayers for boldness, for discernment, and for help in the midst of loneliness and panic and struggle.

I have felt my way through We Pray With Her. Instead of going through the book in order, I have considered the theme that best speaks to my current state and gone to that section for a good word. I have then flipped through for a standalone prayer that relates to what I’m going through. This approach – and the words that I find on the page each night – have been a boon to my spirit. Ending each day with the sense of being seen and using the prayers to open a conversation with God have allowed me, in the midst of all that is difficult in the world right now, to be grateful and thus to be empowered.

I want you to feel seen and to be empowered too, so I am giving away one of the review copies that Abingdon Press sent to me. You can enter by commenting below with a note about why you’d like to receive We Pray With Her. Your comment will enter you into a random drawing on Friday, November 30, at noon central.

18 thoughts on “Book review and giveaway: We Pray With Her

  1. I’ve been looking at this book too, but haven’t gotten it yet. To be able to pray with other Young Clergywomen sounds amazing. I’m pretty isolated here and could use some company.

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  2. You’ve just inspired me! I bought a copy and gave it to a YCW at her ordination. Definitely need my own copy now, as I totally identify with the struggle you named of finding something between “personal holiness” and “social justice I can apply to my life.”

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  3. What a great book – sounds like a helpful companion for many times and occasions! Needing some fresh words for my prayer life, so would welcome a copy.

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  4. I am a Coach who is beginning a Wonen In Ministry Cohort in TN in January 2019. Love to use this book innencoraging and supporting my sisters in ministry!

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  5. Oh boy oh boy!!! I have been hearing such wonderful things about this book and have been aching to get my hands on it. Also, words from my precious friend, Katrina Paxson, can be found in the heart of its pages. So excited! Thank you for your generosity with sharing this wonderful book!!

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  6. This sounds like an amazing devotional! I would love to have a copy to help me stay centered. As a new, young clergy I have a lot to balance between ministry and life. With the death of a parent, my other parent getting remarried, and other struggles of life. This book sounds like such a blessing.

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  7. I would absolutely love to have a copy of this book as I highly respect the authors and feel it would be an inspiring work to help me through the first years as a young female clergy.

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  8. Many friends of mine contributed to this book as well and I have been longing to read their words and others. I am on leave from ministry as a young clergy woman, seeking spiritual renewal after some hard years, and I think this book would speak to my life right now.

    Thank you for sharing your review and the chance to receive a copy!

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