Prayers for Today Review

Book Review: 

Prayers for Today: A Yearlong Journey fo Contemplative Prayer by Kurt Bjorklund guides the reader through a series of 260 devotional readings. The readings are progress through a cycle of ten themes:

* Prayers of Thanksgiving * Prayers of Confession * Prayers of Affirmation
* Prayers of Petition * Prayers of Renewal * Prayers of Praise and Adoration
* Prayers to Have Christ-like Character * Prayers for Wisdom and Guidance
* Prayers of Intercession * Prayers of Surrender
The scope of this cycle provides promptings towards a well-balanced prayer life, without feeling overwhelmed by trying to focus on multiple topics during a single devotional reading. Unlike some other prayer books, there is a single reading for each day, though the reader might choose to do more than one (such as a morning prayer and evening prayer), cycling through the book on a more frequent cycle.
Most of the readings follow a similar pattern. The readings begin with a scripture reading, followed by a written prayer on the theme, generally taken from other prayer books or Christian writers, but sometimes written by Bjorklund himself. In some readings, there are multiple Bible readings and prayers. The day's reading concludes with promptings for free prayer on the days' theme.
Bjorklund is a Lutheran minister, and the book is firmly within the Protestant tradition, though it draws widely from the best of Christian history. As a result, the reader is able to worship through the best of different traditions, without stumbling over material that would cause difficulties theologically. Prayers for Today is very accessible to those who are new to using prayer books as a part of their personal worship.
Prayers for Today is not organized according to the church year, and as a result can be used at any time. Some readers may want to use it alongside more seasonally focused resources at some times of the year. Because of the free structure, the reader is able to choose the number of readings they wish to use daily, and the cycles and seasons of the year during which they want to use the book.
Prayers for Today is highly recommended for anyone wanting to increase the richness of their devotional life. It helps the reader to broaden their prayer life to include a rich variety of themes, and to weave scripture and written prayer alongside free prayer.