Friday, December 16, 2016

The Prayer Saturated Family by Cheryl Sacks

The Prayer Saturated Family: How to Change the Atmosphere in Your Home through Prayer by Cheryl Sacks is a practical tool to help you understand the need for family prayer time, with lots of stories of encouragement and helpful suggestions on how to incorporate a family prayer time into your busy schedule.

Part One: What Happens When Families Pray explains the need for family prayer time. In this section, Cheryl explains the concept of a family altar, and offers lots of real-life examples of why praying as a family has such a big effect - both in communication with God and in teaching our children to follow suit. This section was kind of a hard read for me. Having grown up in a family which did not emphasize God, much less praying together as a family, I felt very discouraged by how much emphasis she put on the concept that adults who grew up in praying families are the ones to teach their children to be part of a praying family. My husband and I are both in our 30's with a total of four kids (9-12), and we've only been on the trek of seeking out Jesus for about a year and a half now. I got this book not because we grew up in praying families, but because we're both trying to learn how to become one. There was a huge road block between where we are and the families that Cheryl seemed to be addressing in this first section. Fortunately, I kept reading the book, albeit very slowly through this first section. Side effect of reading to post reviews is that I won't review a book I haven't finished reading.

Part Two: Time To Take Action is the foundational section that walks you through launching a family prayer time, even if you've never prayed together before. In this section, Cheryl also shows you ways to overcome most common obstacles to family prayer time, such as busy schedules, kids that won't participate (a problem area for us), negative outside influences, and the feeling of overwhelm at not knowing how to do it "properly" (our largest issue).

Part Three: Jump-Start A Lifetime Of Family Prayer is a 31-day family prayer guide, with a suggestion for each day in order to help your family get closer to God. I read this section, and we're planning on implementing it on January 1st, in light of Chapter 12: Dedicating Your Year To The Lord.

Overall, I'm giving this book 4/5 stars. For those readers who did not grow up in households tightly knit in the Lord's word and family prayer time, I would highly suggest reading Part Two of this book first. Because you most likely already believe in the strength of family prayer, or you wouldn't have picked up the book. After you read Part Two, go back and read Part One for more insights and encouragement on ways that God will support your family when your family supports Him. Then, use Part Three as a plan of action to jumpstart your own family prayer time.

*Disclaimer: I received a free print edition of this book from the publisher in exchange for this honest review. All opinions are my own.*

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