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Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home

4.28 of 5 stars 4.28  ·  rating details  ·  2,650 ratings  ·  129 reviews
Best-selling author Richard J. Foster offers a warm, compelling, and sensitive primer on prayer, helping us to understand, experience, and practice it in its many forms-from the simple prayer of beginning again to unceasing prayer. He clarifies the prayer process, answers common misconceptions, and shows the way into prayers of contemplation, healing, blessing, forgiveness ...more
Hardcover, 275 pages
Published August 20th 2002 by HarperOne (first published January 1st 1992)
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Marisa Banas
Dec 18, 2007 Marisa Banas rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: For a "thinker" type of person.
There is no condemnation in Christ Jesus--That is what I learned after reading this wonderful exposition on prayer. The book is basically a compilation of years of research on the subject of prayer. Richard Foster reviews every type of prayer imaginable, supports each style with historical facts, personal stories, and testimonies of every day people. Often times I hear people say, "I don't pray enough," or "I don't pray well." In most cases, this is simple not true. Richard does a great job of h ...more
Paul Dubuc
This book is an excellent introduction to, and survey of, the practice and experience of prayer for Christians. Richard Foster draws from many different traditions and experiences and distills them into this very fine and accessible work. It's very practical, unpretentious and inspiring. Foster helps us examine the many facets of prayer grouped according to three intentions on personal transformation, intimacy with God and ministry to others. Among its 21 chapters you may find aspects of prayer ...more
I read Richard Foster's Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home. I didn't much like it. Well there are parts I want to come back to, and I feel guilty criticizing a book on prayer by someone who has far-and-away-better-prayer-life than me, but it really didn't resonate with me. Here is why:

It is divided into three sections which (upward, inward, outward) and Foster relates each section to one of the Trinity. Each section has seven type of prayers which help you achieve one of these dimensions of p
Richard J. Foster: Please remember, we are dealing with the crucifixion of the will, not the obliteration of the will. Crucifixion always has resurrection tied to it. God is not destroying the will but transforming it so that over a process of time and experience we can freely will that what God wills. In the crucifixion of the will we are enabled to let go of our tightfisted hold on life and follow our best prayers." pgs 54-55
Todd Hudnall
Not just one of the best books I've ever read on prayer but one of the best books I've ever read. Richard Foster has written a comprehensive and thoughtful work on the subject. He draws insights in prayer from desert fathers and Catholic contemplatives to praying Pentecostals and modern Charismatics, basing his insights solidly in Scripture. With 548 pages it is not light reading but it is good reading. Right now it is a Kindle Deal at $2.99. It's ten years old, so my greatest regret concerning ...more
This is a book I'm taking my time reading through and digesting. I have been frustrated for years and years with sermons and books on prayer. Essentially what I got from them was a call to duty (not necessarily a bad thing), and guilt (not a good thing). MOst people I've heard seem to say that they themselves are not "good at praying." Something about this seems off with me. Finally I decided I wanted to spend some time truly thinking about prayer itself, and not feeling guilty. Long story short ...more
Because of my training in the history of Christianity, I have been privileged to be introduced to many of the mystical or devotional classics, from Julian to Tozer, from Bonaventure to Hilton, from the Jesus Prayer monk to Brother Lawrence. My knowledge is hardly encyclopedic, but I say this in order to offer a context for what will strike some as a startling judgment: The single most helpful book for me to actually pray is this one, and it's one of the very few books I have worked through more ...more
Adam Shields
Short Review: This is one of the classic books on prayer. If you are interested in learning more about different forms of prayer, this is a great place to start. This is formatted as a survey of prayer, similar to Foster's book Celebration of Discipline. I do not think it is the best book to be your first book on prayer because it can be a bit intimidating to read about so many types of prayer. But as long as you start it with the attitude of doing what you can and not attempting perfection (the ...more
Alumine Andrew
This is my favourite book on a favourite topic: prayer. Foster’s main aim in this instructional book is not a how-to so much as go-and! He wants us to experience a deeper connection with God, to spend time with Him and find our way in the world through an intimate and personal connection with God, which can only be achieved through prayer.
In these 21 chapters Foster shows us 21 different ways of conversing with God.

It is incredible to see and learn of these ways which like roads, can lead to a
This work is a great introduction to prayer for either the new comer or old soul. Some of these methods may not even seem like prayer at first. There is much here to ponder.
Justin Tapp
Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home is better than I expected. Good books inspire you to read other, older books the author draws on. This book will inspire you to read Augustine, Luther, and others. First published in 1992, it's already a "classic." Great book to start 2014 with.

Foster gives examples of many types of prayer as practiced and described by earlier church fathers. But what I appreciated about this book is Foster's embrace of a theology of work. Work is worship, it is a prayer we
Alexis Neal
Richard Foster, best known for his largely excellent Celebration of Discipline, walks the reader through 21 different types of prayer, including biblical examples and practical guidance. Each section closes with a written prayer that allows the reader to apply the lessons of the preceding chapter.

I have to say, I was pretty disappointed in this book. With 21 chapters, covering 21 different types of prayer, Foster was unable to address any one 'category' of prayer at length. And it's tough to rea
From the chapter on Radical Prayer (the last chapter in the book):

"Our spiritual defiance involves attempting to change God's mind when we believe that to do so is consistent with God's unchanging love. 'Sometimes,' writes Donald Bloesch, 'the prayer of faith involves defiance of God bordering on presumption.'" (p. 247)

I made a note in my virtual margin to the effect of "holy s***", because this statement trespasses on a number of sacred cows of traditional Christian theology, namely the unchang
I found this book very helpful in enriching my prayer life. It has improved my understanding of different types of prayer. It has some good advice on how to pray.

“The truth of the matter is, we all come to prayer with a tangled mass of motives – altruistic and selfish, merciful and hateful, loving and bitter. Frankly, this side of eternity we will never unravel the good from the bad, the pure from the impure. But what I have come to see is that God is big enough to receive us with all our mixtu
Will Waller
Amazing. There is a part of me that shudders to think that I respect a compendium like an encyclopedia or a dictionary. While this has a narrative (somewhat) it really is a listing of all the different kinds of prayer that Christians have used throughout the ages and that Foster has participated in. This makes this book a vital resource for anyone in ministry, or who goes to church, or who lives. To know how to pray opens one up to a myriad of interactions with the holy. Prayer never made much s ...more
If you're looking for a deeper prayer life, this may be the book for you. I began reading Prayer along with a group of women as part of an online book club, and had no clue what I was getting into. I have to be honest, there were chapters that were intimidating and difficult to get through; there were also those chapters that I will likely re-read in the future. There is a ton of good stuff in this book. I spent a good amount of time highlighting sections and re-reading them. The main "take away ...more
I borrowed this book from a library to read because I had been really impressed with one of Foster's other books, Celebration of Discipline. I had also joined the prayer chain at our church, and I wanted my prayer life to be more consistent. I was so amazed at the knowledge, detail, awareness, and holiness in this book that I immediately bought my own copy. I wanted to take notes; I wanted to be able to go back and reread chapters. A pastor friend of mine said it is often used in seminary classe ...more
Kathleen Anderson
this is one of the best scholarly studies on prayer forms ~ anything that helps me love God even more is a blessing: this book is definitely a blessing!
Lady Jaye
This was my first Richard Foster book that I read, and I thoroughly, thoroughly enjoyed myself. I love the way he talked about and conceptualized prayer. And I like the categories he gave for prayer (made it sound almost liturgical). As I have not had much experience with "classical Christian authors" I liked the quotes he had from St. Teresa of Avila and all of those ancient people a lot.

This book gave me a lot of food for thought, a new way to think about prayer and the Christian walk, and ne
Rob Lowe
This book was one of the more helpful books I have read on the topic of prayer. I am thankful for the wisdom of Richard Foster.
A friend lent me this book on the discipline of prayer and I basically read it in one sitting. I enjoy books with perspective, and this book did not disappoint. It's well organized, moving through the various types of prayer chapter by chapter and giving a good overview as well as some personal insights. I enjoyed the chapter on meditative prayer, especially his suggestions for devotional books (not the frou frou kind).

I found that much of what the author was explaining mirrored my own personal
This book is an extensive exploration of prayer, of every kind you can imagine, from the "Petition" kind we all are most familiar with, to some I had not even imagined, like "Authoritative". While at times I felt like the book over analyzes what should be simple, reading this has deepened my own prayer experience, by expanding my understanding and giving me ideas on how to enrich my own praying. Richard Foster is a lyrical, skilled writer, and even though I don't agree with all he says I would d ...more
I recently completed this book after reading Dr. Foster's book "Celebration of Discipline". He seems to have written books about each of the disciplines he discusses in his original book so I picked up this one on Prayer. He conducts an in depth exploration of prayer and all it's different forms which I found unique and very helpful. Who knew there were so many different forms of private, public, and corporate prayer; certainly not I. If you are interested in prayer, want to improve your prayer ...more
Philip Cosand
Life-changing stuff. I had only gotten brief answers of how to pray before, and even though I grew up with prayer, this introduced many concepts I had never heard of.

My friend's copy had little lines and marks written in it and I followed suit. I made notes and underlined sections because I know reading this once simply will not suffice.

Do I agree with everything Foster said? No, but that doesn't invalidate the number of excellent points he clearly makes.

If you need a refresher or college text b
So good. So helpful. So incredible. I seriously love Richard Foster.
Jen B.
I should probably start reading this one again today... and then the day after I finish it the next time... and then I should just keep reading it over and over again for the entirety of my lifetime. SO MUCH information, but not hard to read. It is a great, "Meet you where you are" conversation on prayer, offering a lot for the reader to reflect on, personalize and internalize for growth. I really enjoyed reading it with a small group of close friends for the sake of the conversation and process ...more
Phenomenal book. Best Christian book I've read in a long time. The insights into prayer are extremely practical. He covers a wide range of denominational distinctives, ranging from the practices of the early church fathers which would look at home in a high church setting, to very charismatic/Pentecostal forms of prayer. As a Pentecostal minister, the last two chapters were even a bit out of my comfort zone. Divided into 21 concise, stand-alone chapters, this book, rigorously applied to one's li ...more
Cynthia Vogel
Richard Foster once again does a masterful job of explicating a spiritual discipline, this time Prayer. He discusses every kind of prayer that one might imagine and describes his experiences of it. Numerous miraculous healings and other miracles are described. He offers a challenge; yet makes it an obtainable one. He tells us what we need to do and then shows us the path. I had to pause numerous times while reading this book: to pray. I was so motivated to pray that I couldn't continue to read w ...more
Keith Uffman
Excellent and foundational.
Worthy of a reread.
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Richard J. Foster is the author of several bestselling books, including Celebration of Discipline, Streams of Living Water, and Prayer, which was Christianity Today's Book of the Year and the winner of the Gold Medallion Award from the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association. He is the founder of Renovaré, an intrachurch movement committed to the renewal of the Church in all her multifaceted ...more
More about Richard J. Foster...
Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth Devotional Classics: Selected Readings for Individuals and Groups Streams of Living Water: Celebrating the Great Traditions of Christian Faith Freedom of Simplicity: Finding Harmony in a Complex World Spiritual Classics: Selected Readings on the Twelve Spiritual Disciplines

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“The primary purpose of prayer is to bring us into such a life of communion with the Father that, by the power of the Spirit, we are increasingly conformed to the image of the Son.” 3 likes
“We today yearn for prayer and hide from prayer. We are attracted to it and repelled by it.” 2 likes
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