There are few books that make it to the list of “must have” for every Christian let alone a modern creation like the Valley of Vision. Similar to Pilgrim’s progress the Valley of Vision give helpful insight into the Christian Life and will surely go down as a great classic of its day. Without a doubt The Valley of Vision is a must have for every Christian.
What is the Valley of Vision?
The Valley of Vision is a collection of short Puritan prayers and devotionals compiled by Arthur Bennett. While not all the prayers are actually from Puritans the majority are. With roughly 200 prayers this collection never runs dry as it takes you deeper and deeper into the depths of the Gospel with intimate and insightful prayers. Though its a small little book it’s a well of wisdom from generations of Christians who walked faithfully with Christ.
Why Read the Valley of Vision
Often when we sit down to pray our mind wanders, gets caught on other things like what we have to do for the day or those emails that need to be checked. Not only this but if you’re like me you rarely know what to pray beyond simple petitions on behalf of others. It can feel like digging into concrete to pray with sincerity and to even know what to pray. That’s where this little book comes to help. The level of depth, the insight into man’s heart, and the knowledge of scripture is clearly evident in these prayers. The prayers offer guidance, insight, and even teaching as you sit down to fellowship with the Lord. If you can get past the old English uses of Thees and Thous I’m sure you’ll benefit as well.
What to do with it
I use the Valley of Vision every morning before I open my Bible. I find that the prayers in this little book pack a huge punch in setting my heart on the Lord. After reading one of the prayers I’ll write down a few lines of the prayer that were uniquely impactful and then move to my Bible reading plan.
Here, read for your self…
O Fountain of All Good,
Destroy in me every lofty thought,
Break pride to pieces and scatter it to the winds,
Annihilate each clinging shred of self-righteousness,
Implant in me true lowliness of spirit,
Abase me to self-loathing and self-abhorrence,
Open in me a fount of penitential tears,
Break me, then bind me up;
Thus will my heart be a prepared dwelling for my God;
Then can the Father take up his abode in me,
Then can the blessed Jesus come with healing in his touch,
Then can the Holy Spirit descend in sanctifying grace;
O Holy Trinity, three Persons and one God, inhabit me, a temple consecrated to thy glory.
When thou art present, evil cannot abide;
In thy fellowship is fullness of joy,
Beneath thy smile is peace of sonscience,
By thy side no fears disturb, no apprehensions banish rest of mind,
With thee my heart shall bloom with fragrance;
Make me meet through repentance, for thine indwelling.
Nothing too good for thee to give.
Infinite is thy might, boundless thy love,
limitless thy grace, glorious thy saving name.
Let angels sing for sinners repenting, prodigals restored, backsliders reclaimed, Satan’s captives released, blind eyes opened, broken hearts bound up, the despondent cheered, the self-righteous stripped, the formalist driven from a refuge of lies, the ignorant enlightened, and the saints built up in their holy faith.
I ask great things of a great God.