The Valley of Vision - A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions
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The Valley of Vision - A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions

4.54 of 5 stars 4.54  ·  rating details  ·  4,119 ratings  ·  160 reviews
The strength of Puritan character and life lay in prayer and meditation. In this practice the spirit of prayer was regarded as of first importance and the best form of prayer, for living prayer is the characteristic of genuine spirituality. Yet prayer is also vocal and may therefore on occasions be written. Consequently in the Puritan tradition there are many written praye...more
Paperback, 223 pages
Published November 1st 1975 by Banner of Truth (first published 1975)
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Alexis Neal
Quite possibly the best book I've read all year. These prayers are amazing. In Mudhouse Sabbath, Lauren Winner talks about the benefit of a formal prayer book. She notes that her free-form prayers often devolve into narcissism (this has definitely been my experience), but that the formal, written prayers refocus her on God. This book is a great example of the benefit of written prayers. My own free-form prayers often send me down a rabbit hole of my own personal worries and burdens--worries and...more
Mike
This incredible volume is so theologically dense that it will take a lifetime of readings to fathom its depths. This is a book of prayers written by anonymous Puritans from centuries ago. But, boy, do these good folk know how to pray. The prayers are short (2 pages apiece in my edition) and one could easily read the entire book in a few days, but there is so much to ponder and meditate on that I limited myself to no more than 6 pages per reading session. This is a book that I will be coming back...more
Heather
This book is a collection of excerpts from different Puritan writers arranged as prayers and organized by category. I have been reading a prayer a day with my devotions and have found it helpful to make their prayers my own. I only wish I knew which Puritans wrote them as the book doesn't tell you. Here are some of my favorite prayers:

May my words and works allure others to the highest walks of faith and love.

Teach me the happy art of attending to things temporal with a mind intent on things ete...more
librarian4Him02
This is a collection of prayers and meditations which the editor gleaned from Puritan writings. I picked this one up because I was doing a year-long study on prayer and was told this book contained good examples of prayers. The person who told me this was not wrong.

The language used by the writers of these prayers was beautiful and gave me much to think on. In addition, I gathered many examples of how to incorporate Scripture into my prayer life.

If you too are looking for ways to enhance your...more
Ellen
One of the most influential books in shaping my walk with Christ over the past four years. Will continue to read and re-read... many jewels here.
Bill
The Valley of Vision is an edited collection of prayers written by Puritan authors from the 16th to 19th centuries (e.g. Thomas Watson, Richard Baxter, John Bunyan, Isaac Watts, David Brainerd, C.H. Spurgeon). This book has been a rich source of encouragement and food for my soul as I've read a prayer each day over the last 2 or 3 years. (How can there possibly be 400 pages & 200 prayers in a such a little book?! I should have bought the paperback, the thin paper in the leather bound edition...more
Wade
This is a great collection of prayers, from a passionate and praying people known as the Puritans (mainly 15th and 16th Century in England and New England). The man who collected these prayers, Arthur Bennett, advises people in the "Introductory" section of the book that The Valley of Vision is "not intended to be read as a prayer manual. The soul learns to pray by praying." He said that the prayers should be like "springboards for the individual’s own prayer subjects." That's what these prayers...more
Drgiv
Deep and reflective prayers, logically organized. I used this as part of my daily time with God for nearly a year, and it has been nourishing to my soul. Now I am going to start back at the beginning. The only thing I dislike is not having the prayers attributed to their authors. It sounds like the editor, Arthur Bennett, modified some, if not all, also. I guess that practice was common in 1975, when it was first published, but I found myself wondering, was that the prayer of Richard Baxter? Or...more
Samantha Dixon
The devotionals comprised in this humble little book convey truth in such gripping fashion. It complements morning scripture readings perfectly. Any time I need encouragement or edification, this is my go to devotional. My favorite lines I have stumbled across thus far are "Grant me grace to bear thy will without repining, and delight to be not only chiseled, squared, or fashioned, but separated from the old rock where I have been embedded for so long." This book is a gold mine of wisdom.
Lincoln Forlong
As the title says, this is a collection of old, yet very true and wise prayers by godly people from the Puritan period.

They are profoundly insightful and heart stirring. These prayers wonderfully assist God's children in having deeper, more meaningful thoughts of our Lord.

Anyone wishing to develop shallow, flipant beliefs would find this an uncomfortable read.

This is a seriously healthy read which can be returned to many times over many years, and without disappointment.
Kathleen
This little book is so incredibly helpful when the rivers of prayer run dry ....which in my case so often do. This inspiring book doesn't merely touch the heart, it scrapes it out, revealing the evil motives that lurk within, shining the light on our perpetual inconsistencies. Valley of Vision is just that, it speaks to you in the valley & most certainly gives clarity to your spiritual vision. There's a good reason this book is still around & will be for a long time to come!
Linda
I have been reading this book for over a month now but could easily read it for a lifetime; a month is not long enough to truly appreciate its depth or message. The few nuggets mined, called me to read more, until it was realized this is no easy, quick read. It will take time to study, mediate, and appreciate this collection of Puritan prayers. Contemporary Christianity is no where near its profundity. What a challenge it presents!
Laura Anne
It's amazing that Puritan prayers from hundreds of years ago are still so applicable and powerful in modern times. My favorite of the collection is "Morning Dedication," which ends this way: "May I speak each word as if my final word, and walk each step as my final one. If my life should end today, let this be my best day."
Josue Manriquez
This has got to be one of the best (if not the best) collection of prayers. They're so encouraging and humbling and God-exalting. This is also not one of those books that you read and store away in your bookshelf: you gotta return to it often, even daily, to read a prayer or two and make them your own.
Patricia
Next to my Bible, The Valley of Vision is my favorite choice for daily reading. The prayers are packed with rich theology and they never violate Scripture. They are a plentiful spiritual outpouring from the very minds and hearts of our Puritan forefathers.
Chapronrin
This one does not need to be long. Valley of Vision is one of the top three devotionals ever. It's great to see this classic so appreciated by so many reviews. If you love Oswald Chambers "My Utmost for His Highest" you will feel the same about this book too.
Blake Reas
I am about 1/3 of the way through this little gem, and I think it will be a constant companion. The prayers in it are theologically good, and very practical. It stands as a testament to the spiritual heritage of my puritan forefathers.
Elaine Mazzo
Even though this is in my "read" section, it is a book that can be read over and over again. These prayers focus my own prayers heavenward and really give me a vision to see how to pray and what to pray. High recommended!
Peggy
This book helps me to see God and who He is and then shows me who I am. I find reading this book a most worshipful experience. I have learned to meditate on God using this book.
Lily O'malley
One of my favorite books ever. My copy is never far from me. A poetic little devotional to turn your heart toward worship.
Bevalie Cannon
One of my very favorite 'go to' books for devotion and prayers. Beautifully written prayers organized by season.
Kelli
This is so epic and beautiful. I love it because it's genuine prayers to God. So good to read.
Kelli
Use this almost every single day. A treasure.
Michael Rachel
Devotional, warm, pious, and encouraging.
Kristi
The Valley of Vision is a slim prayer book, but the pages overflow with its goodness. The book is meant to be gone through slowly - hence why it took me nearly a full year to finish reading it. Prayer is not something meant to be rushed through, and this book is a great resource for praying thoughtfully. These prayers captivated my mind and soul, and if you are like me, you'll find yourself quoting them on Twitter and mulling over sections in your mind all day long in an ongoing offering of pray...more
Reid
I really liked this book because of the depth of so many prayers that moved me.

I only wish I knew specifically who wrote them; general references are at the end of the book

Below is a good review, copied from another source.

The strength of Puritan character and life lay in prayer and editation. In this practice the spirit of prayer was regarded as of first importance and the best form of prayer, for living prayer is the characteristic of genuine spirituality. Yet prayer is also vocal and may ther...more
Mike E.
This, more than any other book besides the Bible, has taught me to pray. Phrases like "Raise me above the smiles and frowns of this world" have become part of my heart and prayer life. This book is a collection of prayers from various puritans including C.H. Spurgeon, Richard Baxter, Isaac Watts, et. al. The authors of the individual prayers are not identified, which I like. Some of the vocabulary and sentence structure can be a challenge. Each prayer has been given a title, e.g. "Sleep" or "Voy...more
Jeff
Arthur Bennett's prayers come heart-felt from some of the great Puritans of years past. So in that respect, I believe they truly reflect the heart of God. For the modern reader, though, they may seem somewhat stilted and archaic in their wording. Whether this will detract from the prayers of certain readers is a possibility. But if one makes the effort to push through, he or she should be well rewarded. But updating the wording would likely add a new crop of readers who could benefit from prayer...more
Jennifer
Beautiful. A spirit stirring, convicting collection of prayers from giants of the faith who have gone before us. Highly recommend as an addition to your devotional prayer time.
Joseph McBee
This is my third time through this book. I still love it. Along with my Bible, it is my constant companion during my daily devotions. I cannot recommend it highly enough.
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What a book!! 4 33 Jul 30, 2013 08:23PM  
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.
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“May I consent to and delight in thy law after the inner man, never complain over the strictness of thy demands, but mourn over my want of conformity to them; never question thy commandments, but esteem them to be right. By thy spirt within me may my practice spring from principle, and my dispositions be conformable with duty.” 1 likes
“​Oh God, it is amazing that men can talk so much about man's creaturely power and goodness, when, if thou didst not hold us back every moment, we should be devils incar​​nate.” 1 likes
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