Saturday 8 February 2020

You Can Pray - Nora Browne - Meditations for Teens

You Can Pray!
Meditations for Teens

Nora Browne
ISBN 9781594171840
eISBN 9781594172014

I am not a teen and have not been for a long time. But I have one teenager in the house and with in a few years all three will be in their teens. It was an incredible read. Over the week that I worked through this book I kept telling people about it. And I have already told all three children I would like them to work through the eBook on their tablet.

The description of the volume is:

“Have you ever tried to pray, but found yourself daydreaming instead? Do you sometimes wonder what you’re supposed to do, or say, or think at the time of prayer? Do you ever wonder if God really hears your prayers? If so, then this book is for you.

You Can Pray! contains 125 short points for reflection that will help you kick-start your conversation with God. These reflections will stimulate your mind and heart to ponder the really important things in life, like God, family, friends, your future, and much more. Keep it tucked away in your pocket or backpack, and use it the next time you go to pray. If you do, you will always be ready to speak with your Father God, who will always be listening.”

The 125 points are amazing. You can read this book from beginning to end. Pick a chapter and work through it, or randomly pick and read any of the 125 points. My first time reading through this volume I highlighted 15 of the points. I also copied out about a half dozen and shared them with specific friends. The chapters in the volume are:

Keeping in Touch with God
Wanting to Shine
Showing Love for God
Getting to Know God More
Making Up with God
Being True to Yourself and Loyal to God
Obeying Without Resenting
Watching, Reading, and Listening
Going to Mass
Knowing the Truth and Being Free
Being Unenslaved to Fads, Whims, and Fancies
Loving Your Family
Loving Your Mother in Heaven
Being a True Friend to Your Friends

The individual chapters have between 5and 15 points. The two that hit me most were:

"24 Jesus is really there, hidden in the tabernacle, under the appearance of bread. So try not to ignore him. Say to him slowly, “Lord, I firmly believe that you are here, that you see me, that you hear me. I adore you and love you with all my heart. I am sorry for all those people who do not know you and who do not love you.”


“32 We all need to grow in our knowledge of God and in the truths of the faith. So try to make as much effort in learning about the faith as you do in learning about science, computers, music, fashion, sports. You can’t really appreciate what you don’t know, and you won’t appreciate the beauty of the faith unless you know it well. What you learned in grade school is not going to be enough to answer all the doubts or problems that may arise in later life. Keep improving in your knowledge of the faith by reading and perhaps by taking classes on the faith. It will help you a lot.”

A few of the others that I highlighted were:

“I hope that this book helps you to pray. Not just to pray using prayers from a prayer book, or saying the prayers you learned when you were younger (although it is good to say them daily), but to pray by talking to our Lord, using your own words, talking to him about the things that are in your mind and that matter to you.”

“05 You might complain that you pray for things and don’t get them, and so you think there’s no point at all in praying. Well, to start with, prayer is not just a matter of asking for things. Secondly, God does listen to you and answer prayers, although sometimes the answer might be “No” because what you are asking for would not be good for you. Or God might simply be saying “Not yet,” because he wants you to pray a bit harder or for a longer time to see if you are really convinced about what you want. If you are the type of person who stops praying because you don’t immediately get what you think you should get, then you are acting a bit like a spoiled child who has a tantrum whenever he is told “No.” Would you give in to a spoiled child? So, keep going and don’t give up praying. God is listening and you will receive what is best.”

“10 It is very good to say vocal prayers—the Our Father, the Hail Mary, etc.—but make sure you say them well, with your heart as well as with your lips.”

“34 Get to know the Catholic faith very well by reading the Catechism of the Catholic Church and other good books on the faith. It will help you make the right decisions, and you’ll be firm in your convictions. You will also be able to explain to your friends why you believe what you believe.”

“61 Try to get up straight away each morning, without giving in to laziness. It won’t kill you. Instead it will help to make you a better person with a strong character. You can lead others to our Lord by showing that you are able to conquer your laziness from the very first moment of the day.”

I hope those few samples will help you see some of the power of the points contained within this volume. It is a fantastic read. I highly recommend it for the tweens and teens in your life. And really believe we can all benefit from most of the point in the book. An excellent read, and one I know I will return to again.

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2020 Catholic Reading Plan!

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