Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home

by Richard J. Foster

Hardcover, 2002


Checked out



Best-selling author Richard J. Foster offers a warm, compelling, and sensitive primer on prayer, helping us to understand, experience, and practice it in its many forms-from the simple prayer of beginning again to unceasing prayer. He clarifies the prayer process, answers common misconceptions, and shows the way into prayers of contemplation, healing, blessing, forgiveness, and rest. Coming to prayer is like coming home, Foster says. "Nothing feels more right, more like what we are created to be and to do. Yet at the same time we are confronted with great mysteries. Who hasn't struggled with the puzzle of unanswered prayer? Who hasn't wondered how a finite person can commune with the infinite Creator of the universe? Who hasn't questioned whether prayer isn't merely psychological manipulation after all? We do our best, of course, to answer these knotty questions but when all is said and done, there is a sense in which these mysteries remain unanswered and unanswerable . . . At such times we must learn to become comfortable with the mystery." Foster shows how prayer can move us inward into personal transformation, upward toward intimacy with God, and outward to minister to others. He leads us beyond questions to a deeper understanding and practice of prayer, bringing us closer to God, to ourselves, and to our community.… (more)


HarperOne (2002), Edition: 10th Anniversary ed., 288 pages


Christian Book Award (Winner — Inspirational — 1993)

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Media reviews

Foster's relaxed and emotionally honest reflections upon his own prayer life make the point that seizing upon the sanctity of the ordinary is essential to a rich inner life. Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home is an essential resource you'll rely upon again and again as you seek to add breadth
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and depth to your spiritual practice.
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(144 ratings; 4.1)

User reviews

LibraryThing member rybeewoods
Dry at times, really out there at times, inspiring at times. This book covers so much about prayer it almost left me paralized. I probably need to revisit this in small bite sized pieces. And to be honest, sometimes Dick Fo freaks me out.
LibraryThing member cegr76
A superb book on the art of prayer. Foster hasn't written a how-to book, but more like a description of various approaches to prayer. He utilizes ancient church teachings, biblical insight and analogy to help the reader discover prayer for his/herself. I am using this in a group study and we are
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loving it.
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LibraryThing member justindtapp
Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home is better than I expected. Good books inspire you to read other, older books the author draws on. This book will inspire you to read Augustine, Luther, and others. First published in 1992, it's already a "classic." Great book to start 2014 with.

Foster gives
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examples of many types of prayer as practiced and described by earlier church fathers. But what I appreciated about this book is Foster's embrace of a theology of work. Work is worship, it is a prayer we offer to God. It is incorrect to say "If only I had more time to pray, instead of having to work today." Our work itself is a prayer, and since wherever we are the Holy Spirit goes with us, wherever we are is holy ground. We can worship there, we must worship there. Do you think Jesus didn't worship as a carpenter, or Paul as a tentmaker? Foster once worked among Eskimos in Alaska, and noted how the Eskimo Christians embedded this theology of work in their daily lives. "You're digging this ditch for the glory of God," Foster was told, which changed his life.

Foster is a Quaker and taught me that waiting is worship.Whether waiting in line at the grocery or waiting on lab test results or waiting to see what next year will bring-- that act of waiting and anticipation should be worship.We don't like to wait and we don't like to listen, but that's a form of prayer that God answers.

Foster reminds me of a Sunday school teacher we had in Waco, I'm sure Mike has read and been influenced by this book. He discusses his own transformation in regards to approaching prayers for healing-- from a skeptic to an active practitioner; he tells of Augustine's similar conversion as described in Augustine's City of God. We Baptists often hinder our own prayers by justifying our own doubts and God's inaction with the "if it be Your will..." clause at the end of healing prayers-- Foster has no patience for this.

I also appreciated his outlining of the importance of small-group community and prayer, giving an example of what he tries to live out and others he knows of. He describes community in a way I find ideal. I give this book 4.5 stars. I look forward to reading his Celebration of Discipline.
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