SPIRITUALITY & RELIGION

A Rhythm of Prayer: A Collection of Meditations for Renewal

Convergent. Sept. 2020. 176p. ISBN 9780593137215. $20. REL
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Bessey (Jesus Feminist) curates an inspiring compendium of original prayers and essays written by progressive faith leaders. Each entry is a meditative gift offering a gateway for one to sit with the challenges of living in the world today. Bessey inserts biblical and inspirational quotes throughout the three sections of the book: orientation, disorientation, and reorientation. The words here allow spiritual devotions to be approached with a diverse lens while remaining God-centered. A timely prayer piece by theologian and psychologist Chanequa Walker-Barnes, "Prayer of a Weary Black Woman," delves into the racism that Black and Brown people face in the United States. Lisa Sharon Harper's "A Prayer for America" addresses the marginalized and forgotten, recognizing income disparities as well as systemic oppression. Rozella Haydee White takes the lost on a journey through her ­essay, "Ancestral Wisdom, Present Guidance," reminding readers that prayer offers direction for those open to its guidance.
VERDICT A book that allows people to speak in their own words while reminding those in positions of privilege that their faith in action is a catalyst for change. This is a welcome addition for those who enjoy contemplative prayer collections that intersect with important topics such as social justice.

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