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Alone with God: A Practical Plan for Dynamic…

Alone with God: A Practical Plan for Dynamic Devotions (vuoden 2006 painos)

– tekijä: Jason Janz (Tekijä)

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioKeskustelut
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In Alone with God: A Practical Plan for Dynamic Devotions, Janz shares his journey toward understanding that daily private worship has as its basis the building of an intimate relationship with the Lord. His book combined with the Alone with God Daily Journal offers a practical, interactive approach to this special time, and includes directions for reading, prayer, and praise. Janz's insights and simple program will help any Christian to engage in daily devotions that are vibrant and rewarding.… (lisätietoja)
Teoksen nimi:Alone with God: A Practical Plan for Dynamic Devotions
Kirjailijat:Jason Janz (Tekijä)
Info:JourneyForth (2006), 155 pages
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto
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Alone with God: A Practical Plan for Dynamic Devotions (tekijä: Jason Janz)


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If you are like me, you struggle with a good routine, not to mention consistency, in your devotions. And I’m sure you have experienced times when you read your Bible and pray and yet don’t feel like you really encountered God at all. Jason’s book was written with you and I in mind, so don’t worry there is hope!

Now I’m sure you are also aware that no book will prove to be the panacea for all of our spiritual maladies. No single book, short of the Bible, contains the cure-all for every spiritual problem. And as Jason admits, books written to help readers have meaningful times with God are a dime a dozen these days.

But Alone with God is different. It is not a devotional guide, nor is it a mystical, new age, “fresh” approach. Rather it is designed to be a book that both encourages us to press for a real and sustained relationship with God and gives us a practical approach or plan to make it happen. It is the combination of these two aims which make the book so unique and so valuable.

Now, nothing magical or brilliant is necessarily offered within its pages. Jason believes we should be reading the Bible and praying and that this will be the absolutely indispensable means for us to know and commune with God. But Jason (an assistant pastor for 10 years) also knows a little bit about how people tick. And so his book contains just the right mix of “preaching” and encouragement along with a do-able plan so that the average person will be empowered to consistently have a meaningful time “alone with God” each day.

The book is so helpful, because it was born out of Jason’s need to help himself. He faced his own struggles with consistency and vitality in devotions—faced them and won. Jason’s plan draws from his experience at beginning a disciplined work-out and exercise routine. He has found that planning out each step of what he is going to do was immensely helpful. Then he applied a similar approach to his personal time with God. The result is a simple and organized plan which frees a person to experience a deep and meaningful relationship with God.

The book is basically an explanation of his practical approach to planning out his quiet times with God. At times it seems to simple. In all it is only 148 pages (thirty or so from the appendix section). But who needs something complicated when it comes to revamping your walk with God?

This book challenged me about the seriousness and importance of time with God. But it also encouraged me and provided real hope. Jason doesn’t push for Bible reading or memorization so much as he pushes for encountering and knowing God through the Word. He claims, “We are not simply seeking facts about God; we are seeking to know Him personally.” This focus weaves its way throughout the book and is one of its greatest strengths. Jason also includes a very helpful chapter on meditation, a practice which modern Christians have all but abandoned. Jason also goes out of his way to dispel many myths which surround a daily time with God.

The book, as I said, is not much more than an explanation of the plan, and so you will want to know more about that plan. Again, like the book it is fairly simple, but it draws from insights from George Mueller and others (the book includes a fascinating four page excerpt written by Mueller describing his own habit of meditating and praying from Scripture). Jason has also given a timeline for his plan to be used in either a 20 or 30 minute session. The best thing about the plan is that it’s flexible and includes variety. It should keep you awake and also engaged in the Word and in prayer. What more could we ask? What follows below is my own explanation of Jason’s approach.

Preparation — This step prepares your mind for time with God. It might be a brief prayer, worshipful song, or even a short reading form a Christian book or devotional.
Confession — This step includes a time of searching one’s heart to confess known sin. It may even just be a time to look over a list of sins that the book provides and seriously examine whether they are present in your life. It allows you to get sin out of the way and dealt with before a more intimate time with God ensues.
Revelation — This step is an intentional reading of the Bible with the goal of learning about God. It is the longer time of Bible reading that is included in the plan.
Adoration — This step is where you praise God intentionally. You may praise Him for the things you just learned about Him in your reading. Also the book provides lists of the names of God for you to ponder. Jason encourages a song of praise or thanksgiving to be sung.
Transformation — This step is an interactive reading of a passage of Scripture, primarily from Psalms or Proverbs. It is a time for reading slowly and praying back to God or meditating over and rejoicing in each line or thought that you read. This method will prove to be worth the time it takes to learn. This is when God is speaking to you and you to him in a very personal and transforming way.
Communication — This step is for personal and intercessory prayer—praying for needs. It includes a time of casting your cares on God intentionally and may include a time of claiming one of God’s promises.
Meditation — This step is where you actually write down what God has taught you and recording a verse or thought from your Bible readings which you will try to meditate on throughout the day.
Application — This step includes more journalling. You are to write down what God has told you to do, or what you plan to change because of this time with God. You may also journal other insights during this time.

I would encourage you to get this book and read it. There is a companion journal available to purchase in conjunction with the book. Amazon even offers a deal when you buy both. The book certainly has helped put a fire in my heart again to really and truly know God personally each day. I want to be “alone with God”, and this book can help me actually do so by giving me a simple plan to aim for each day. With God’s help I intend to follow this plan for the remainder of this year (at least).

Disclaimer: This book was provided by Bob Jones University Press for review. I was under no obligation to offer a favorable review.

An expanded version of this review is available at CrossFocusedReviews.com, where you can find book excerpts, giveaways, promotional offers, audio reviews and more. ( )
  bobhayton | Aug 16, 2010 |
If you only read one book this year, read Alone with God.

Why do I say that?

Well, for starters, if you currently have a consistent daily time with God which is incredibly rich and truly transforming your life, then you can stop reading right here; you don't need this book.

What, still reading? I thought so. Me too.

There are usually 2 classes of books: books of deep insight and impeccable doctrine which I enjoy reading, but 2 months later if I was asked how the book actually changed my life I would be stumped. The other class of book is one which is a great read and contains a lot of practical tips which I can incorporate into my life, but which merely contains human wisdom (even if it is wrapped in a Bible verse), and never really approaches the level of life transformation that true teaching of the Word should.

Alone with God belongs to that rare 3rd class of book which starts with the word of God accurately taught and then applies it in concrete, practical terms that can truly transform the life.

Chapter by chapter, Jason lays it out: Chapter One: It's All About a Relationship, introducing how important investing ourselves in time with God is. Chapter Two: The Foundation-- salvation, the Holy Spirit, prayer, the Bible, and the goal of a growing relationship with God. Chapter Three: The Need, opens up our need for inner renewal, to seek God, to depend on God, to find satisfaction in God, to realize the work of the Spirit, for immersion in the Word of God, for focused prayer, for spiritual discipline, for quality time, and for planning. In Chapter Four he next confronts the myths, such as "I'm the only one who struggles with daily devotions" and "I don't have time."

After laying the groundwork, he then launches into a planned eight step approach for spending either 20 or 30 minutes with God each day, broken down into confession, revelation, adoration, transformation, communication, meditation, and application. There are also chapters on meditation, friendship, and several helpful appendixes.

So, what's the bottom line? First, this is well written stuff, bringing together a lot of diverse teaching and wisdom about time with God organized in one book, and is great to help prime the pump of our eagerness to spend time with God. Any guy that quotes Bonar, Sanders, Boice, Grudem, Piper, Pierson, Mueller, Edwards, Packer, Horton, Lewis, Murray, Tozer, & MacArthur all in one book gets an A+ from me.

Second, although it is easy (at least for non-regimented types like me) to reject seemingly artificial constructs for spending time with God, there's wisdom here. Although it seems constricting to say I'm going to spend 5 minutes praying then 10 minutes reading then 5 minutes meditating, what it really boils down to is a personal liturgy, a personal order of worship. If any of us attended a church worship service with no structure whatsoever, not knowing for sure how long or if there was going to be singing or preaching or praying, we would immediately realize we were in trouble. So why is our "daily personal worship service" with God any different?

To change the metaphor, if you went to a gym every day with no plan of what machines you were going to work out on or how long you were going to spend, there's not much reason to believe that you would end up accomplishing much. Jason says we should not think any differently of spiritual growth, and he's right. We have to have a structured plan, and we have to execute it. If reading Alone with God stimulates you to come up with a different plan than outlined in the book, that's great. But plan you must, and act you must, to produce real growth in your life that will transform you and advance the Kingdom. Why not make a daily, structured time with God, either with help from Jason's book or else on your own, your #1 New Year's priority? ( )
  wiseasgandalf | Nov 13, 2007 |
"One regular frustration that believers have is the inconsistency of their walk with God. There are times when the Word drips like honey into their mouths, when time seems to stand still as they enjoy the presence of God."
[Read More]
  pastorbookshelf | Sep 15, 2007 |
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In Alone with God: A Practical Plan for Dynamic Devotions, Janz shares his journey toward understanding that daily private worship has as its basis the building of an intimate relationship with the Lord. His book combined with the Alone with God Daily Journal offers a practical, interactive approach to this special time, and includes directions for reading, prayer, and praise. Janz's insights and simple program will help any Christian to engage in daily devotions that are vibrant and rewarding.

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