by Heather Bock
Do you want to talk to Jesus as if He were a friend?
Do you want to talk to Him like He’s standing right in front of you?
Would you like a new perspective on prayer?
If you could answer yes to any of these questions, you might be interested in Jeannie Blackmer’s book Talking to Jesus: A Fresh Perspective on Prayer.
I do already talk to Jesus as if He were a friend, and I often think of Him as if He were standing right in front of me, but I always love to hear a new perspective on prayer (like this one I read and reviewed two years ago), and I felt refreshed by this book.
In each chapter, Blackmer retells a story from the gospel of Matthew, each an encounter with Jesus. She imagines what it might have been like: what sounds and smells may have been there, what the men and women may have thought, and what their backgrounds may have been. Her stories drew me in and helped me see the familiar narratives with new eyes.
Next, Blackmer gives a personal response to the story, telling what she’s learned about Jesus and prayer to Him through it. She follows with related verses, then ends with a section called Observations, a place for readers to reflect about what they read, answer questions, and personally apply it. Each of these sections conclude with a place to write a related prayer.
One I particularly liked was the story of the woman who had been bleeding for twelve years. I had never noticed before that Jesus called her “daughter.” Blackmer speculates that maybe the woman didn’t have much of a relationship with her own father, especially as she had been ceremonially unclean for that long due to the blood. I also hadn’t noticed before how related another encounter with Jesus was that was going on at the same time. It also involved twelve years–the number of years of the girl who had died. Both healed were called daughters–one by her devoted father, and the other by her devoted Father through Jesus. By pointing out these connections, Blackmer opened my eyes to the possibility that this woman was not only physically healed but emotionally healed, as well. Perhaps His calling her daughter answered an emotional need she had.
All of the stories made me think about the encounters with Jesus in a new way. For each one, I tried to picture myself in the place of the person talking to Jesus. This approach helped me focus on Jesus’ response in a way I hadn’t before. It made me think about how He might respond to my own requests.
If you are interested in reading this book for yourself, you can purchase it here. You also can wait a few days and check back here on Wednesday, because I will be doing a giveaway for one free copy of the book, and if you win, I will send it to you.
In the meantime, I am still in the middle of a drawing for a giveaway for an NIV Faithgirlz Backpack Bible, review for it here.
If you’d like to enter in my drawing for this free Bible (normally retailed at $24.99):
- Click the button “follow” in the place under my picture (top right of a computer and way down below the comments on a phone) where it says, “Follow Blog Via Email.” Once you hit the button, it should give you a place to type in your email address. You may have to follow up with an email sent to you to fully subscribe, so check your spam folder if it doesn’t arrive in your inbox.
- Please notify me in a comment of your name so I will know who to congratulate if you win!
To earn more entries, or if you’re already following my blog,
- Share this post via social media. Each share to a different social media venue earns you one entry (up to three).
- Let me know in a comment where you’ve shared.
- Notify me of your name.
Giveaways are open to residents of the continental U.S. and Canada and are only open to those who have not won from me in the last year.
I will announce the winner this coming Wednesday, December 6, so look for it! If I don’t hear from the winner within a week, I will draw another name. Thank you!