Liturgies for Daily Worship: A Review

Here’s an interesting book of daily devotions: Be Thou My Vision: A Liturgy for Daily Worship by Jonathan Gibson. The book is pretty much what you’d expect from the title. It’s a 31 day collection of liturgies for the day. For example, there’s a call to worship, a prayer of adoration, a reading of the law, confession of sin, assurance of pardon, creedal confession, a song of praise, a catechism lesson, a prayer, a Scripture reference for reading, and another prayer. Each day’s liturgy roughly follows that order.

The prayers are often taken from the Book of Common prayer as well as past theologians such as Augustine, Bernard, Jonathan Edwards, Martin Luther, and Augustus Toplady (just to name a few). The Heidelberg Catechism and the Westminster Shorter Catechism are in an appendix for easy reference. Speaking of, the appendixes also include the M’Cheyne Bible reading plan, the Collects from the Book of Common Prayer, and an author/liturgy index. It’s a handsome hardcover book with a nice box for storage. The pages are nice and thick for those who take notes or underline words. There are several bookmarks to help reference the appendixes.

This is a helpful book for those of our readers who are more liturgical- and church calendar-minded. I go back and forth on daily liturgies like this. On the one hand I appreciate the prayers and practices of the historic Christian church and I do think we should know them, learn from them, and follow in the footsteps of those who have gone before us. On the other hand, I’m not one who appreciates lectionaries or celebration of church calendar days like Lent and Epiphany and so on. My main critique of this book on daily liturgy is that it is more Anglican than Reformed/Presbyterian. For example, in this book you’ll find a collect for All Saints day and the Sundays in Lent. You’ll also find prayers of Anglicans such as George Herbert, Samuel Johnson, and Jeremy Taylor (just to name a few).

For those readers of ours who are in the Anglican tradition, I’m guessing you’ll enjoy this book and benefit from it. But for those readers of ours who are less inclined towards lectionaries and other similar Anglican distinctives, you’ll maybe want to find another devotional or just skip over some aspects of it that you don’t appreciate as much.

Be Thou My Vision: A Liturgy for Daily Worship by Jonathan Gibson

Shane Lems
Covenant Presbyterian Church (OPC)
Hammond, WI, 54015