Book Review: "Praying with Jane"
If you follow me on Instagram, you know that in January, I read through a 30 day devotional called, Praying with Jane. This book was recommended to me because I'm a Jane Austen fan. I don't read may themed devotional books, but this one intrigued me. So, I convinced two friends, also Jane fans, to read through it with me, you know, for accountability and to make it more fun. And it did not disappoint!
Rachel Dodge did a beautiful thing with this devotional. She took the three prayers that Jane wrote for herself and her family and broke them down into a line or two each day. She explained why Jane would pray this way, giving historical background that I was only vaguely aware of, such as: Jane's father was a pastor, Jane's family read daily prayers together, and Jane herself was a sincere Christian. That alone would have made the book worth buying. But Mrs. Dodge went farther. She connected each line with scenes or characters from Jane's books that reflected the heart of Jane's prayer. For Jane fans, this was the cherry on top.
It was fun to see Jane's characters from this new perspective, the perspective of Jane's sincere faith. When she prays that her heart would always be interceding for others, we see the same heart in Fanny (Mansfield Park). When she prays for mercy on the widows and sick and the poor, we see Emma visiting Ms. Bates (Emma). When she prays for whole-hearted devotion to God, we see that kind of devotion in Anne and Captain Wentworth (Persuasion). It made me want to read all the books again with this new perspective in mind.
Let me say one thing, this devotion is not wimpy. This is not water-down theology and happy, fuzzy feelings to start your day. Each day was a challenge. Reading through the book with friends made me slow down and really consider the challenges God laid before me. If you read it, I definitely encourage you to read it with a friend.
I have heard that the author lives near me. If I get a chance to meet her, you can bet I will be saying, "Thank You." She didn't have to write this devotional but I'm so glad she did.
If you would like to buy this book, you can find it here. By using this link, I get a few pennies back as an Amazon Affiliate. Thanks.