What if prayer could be simple rather than strenuous?
Anxious, results-driven Christians can never pray enough, serve enough, or study enough. But what if God is calling us not to frenzied activity but to a simple spiritual encounter? What if we must merely receive what God has already given us?
In Flee, Be Silent, Pray, writer and contemplative retreat leader Ed Cyzewski guides readers out of the anxiety factory of contemporary Christianity and toward a God whose love astounds those quiet long enough to receive it. With helpful guidance into solitude, contemplative prayer, and practices such as lectio divina and the Examen, Cyzewski guides readers toward the Christ whose yoke is easy and whose burden is light.
Ready to shed the fear of the false self and the exhaustion of a duty-driven faith? Flee. Be silent. Pray.
“This book will challenge and change you. It will require things of you that you may not think you are capable of, but in the end you will discover that, instead of having read a typical how-to book, you have encountered a written icon: a window into God, allowing for deeper intimacy and understanding.”Tara Owens, author of Embracing the Body and At Play in God's Creation, Reviews
“Ed Cyzewski is reaching back into the history of Christian practice to recover a contemplative tradition. If you're looking for a still point in our turning world—the silence at the heart of faithful action—you should read this book.”Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, author of Reconstructing the Gospel, Reviews
“In Flee, Be Silent, Pray, Ed Cyzewski sucks out the anxious performance poison that plagues so many Protestant prayers by reminding us of this simple truth: life-giving prayer is rooted in the depths of knowing God’s love. If you find yourself in a prayer rut, if you find your prayer life dying on the vine, pick up Flee, Be Silent, Pray and discover the freedom of contemplative prayer.”Seth Haines, author of Coming Clean
“As an evangelical activist, I need to be honest and say the title of this book frightened me—but I’m so glad I read it! Ed Cyzewski writes about the importance of contemplative practices specifically for people like me: people who are burned out from trying to save the world and to make God love us. Rooted in history and ancient practices and grounded in both current politics and religious movements, Flee, Be Silent, Pray is incredibly relevant in an age of turmoil and anxiety. It’s a book I will turn to time and time again as I orient myself toward receiving and extending the love of God to myself and to my neighbor.”D.L. Mayfield, author of Assimilate or Go Home
“Too many believers lose faith when confronted with the silence, solitude, and mystery of death and suffering, especially believers who have an expectation that faith must involve words, certainties, and forward movement. In Flee, Be Silent, Pray, Ed Cyzewski introduces us to a God who dwells in the sanctuary of solitude, and he shares practices that enable us to do the same. This is a book that gives space for believers who need more than answers and certainties. This is a book for believers who want to find the presence of God in both life and death.”Caleb Wilde, author of Confessions of a Funeral Director
“With gentle and hard-won wisdom, Ed Cyzewski opens our eyes to the ways our culture—both the secular and the Christian—has created ‘raw materials for anxiety production.’ He is a compassionate guide, giving voice to fears that he has wrestled with. Ed’s book reminds me that the search for God is full of distractions and that a contemplative life means consistently reorienting my posture toward God. But ‘flee, be silent, and pray’ are not words that encourage us hide from darkness. Instead, they are contemplative practices that—when followed—reveal God’s presence with us in both the suffering and joy of the world. Ed’s offering to anxious Christians is beautifully simple: ancient paths that reveal and heal.”Christiana N. Peterson, author of Mystics and Misfits
“I hope evangelicals discover the contemplative prayer practices that Ed Cyzewski introduces in this fine book and incorporate them into their lives. I hope they introduce these practices into their churches and make those churches stronger as a result. This hope is why I was penciling “Yes!” in the margins throughout Flee, Be Silent, Pray. . . . Flee, Be Silent, Pray is like a toolkit of implements we all can use to shape our souls and change the world.”Jon M. Sweeney, author of The Pope's Cat series, from foreword