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Being with God: The Absurdity, Necessity, and Neurology of Contemplative Prayer

Being with God: The Absurdity, Necessity, and Neurology of Contemplative Prayer


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All fruitful doing must begin with being. For many Christians, it's easy to be swept up into the fast pace of modern life, desiring to do much for God. But we struggle to slow down and be with God.

According to pastor, Enneagram teacher, and author AJ Sherrill, being with God is what empowers doing for God. Sherrill shares his own journey from "busy" Christianity to the ancient paths of contemplative practices. He equips readers to integrate rhythms of stillness, silence, and solitude, offering step-by-step guidance and examples of finding solitude both personally and on retreats.
Sherrill warns that making these changes appears absurd in a society where time is money, productivity is central, and hurry is a way of life. He guides readers gently through the beginning and often confusing stages of contemplative practice. Citing timely insights from the world of neurology and mental health, he shows that solitude is crucial not only for Christian growth but also for holistic flourishing. Foreword by Rich Villodas.

Readers will emerge, centered in Christ, well on their way to this goal: slow down, pay attention, be still, and be loved.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781587434730
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 10/19/2021
Pages: 176
Sales rank: 1,140,809
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x (d)

About the Author

AJ Sherrill (DMin, Fuller Theological Seminary) has more than twenty years of experience as a pastor, including as lead pastor at Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He is now lead pastor at St. Peter's Church in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. He is an adjunct professor at Fuller Theological Seminary, where he teaches popular courses on transformational preaching and the Enneagram. Sherrill receives many speaking requests to lead Enneagram workshops across the country and is the author of The Enneagram for Spiritual Formation.

Table of Contents


Foreword by Rich Villodas
Introduction: Read Me
Part 1: Absurdity
1. Weird
2. Tech
3. Hear
Part 2: Necessity
4. Noise
5. Room
6. Still
7. Groans
8. Dive
9. Gaze
Part 3: Neurology
10. Breath
11. Stress
12. Sleep
Conclusion: Benefits of Contemplative Prayer
Appendix A: Designing a Contemplative Retreat
Appendix B: Additional Resources

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