Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Pray Like a Gourmet: Creative Ways to Feed Your Soul by David Brazzeal

Prayer is relationship. It is important to spend time enhancing our relationship with God. We can get in a rut in any relationship and can need a refresh. Pray like a Gourmet is definitely refreshing. I was initially concerned about the association with food. If you think about it though, food is one of our basic needs like love and relationship, so we can all relate easily to this analogy. I like the mix of traditional and creative prayers with a simple or complex mode according to your wants and needs in your prayer life. You can literally use your whole self; mind, body and spirit and all your gifts and talents as a gift to God in prayer.
One of my favorite parts of the book is the analogy in the introduction about a meal in France versus American fast food and our prayer life. Mr. Brazzeal teaches how to savor our time with God and give him the best of ourselves and also that we can be real with God. The format of the book is interesting, such as part two which describes types of prayers, with biblical references and lots of examples. Types of prayers discussed are: Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Petition, Observation, Intercession, Meditation, Contemplation, Blessing, Lamenting, and Joining.  There are Catholic undertones and sometimes it is even more explicit with confession and saints, etc. One thing I did not like is that the words of importance that are supposed to summarize and stick out to you are in light yellow print. I think a bold darker color would have been more effective but it did cause me to have to look closely.
The author makes his home in France, has lived in Brazil, and has worked in Guadalupe and Quebec. The description in his biography includes "all his work is inspired by the organic fusion that exists between the spiritual and the creative". In chapter two, Brazzeal tells us "Several religions practice specific food restrictions and fasting as spiritual reminders.." Also that, "Abstaining from physical food can play a powerful role in creating a hunger and receptivity for spiritual food.." There is a lot of food analogies in organized religions and specifically Catholicism in the Eucharist.
I would recommend this book to you to enhance your prayer life. The book is very visually appealing with tons of prayer ideas. You can take your time reading the book as you try all the great suggestions. Let yourself be challenged as you grow spiritually and closer to God.

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