Praying in Color: Drawing a New Path to God, by Sybil MacBeth… Book Review

This book is a delightful guide to prayer which uses color. It is not a coloring book but a book about the many ways that the author uses color in prayer. I get so inspired every time I pick this book up! I haven’t ever read it all the way through at one sitting because after a few pages I am pulling out paper and colored pens.

This is a book for non-artists and artists alike. Sybil MacBeth tells us right away that she can’t draw a cat. Hooray, I can relate! She can doodle, though, and so can you, and so can anyone.

She used to teach mathematics, and I was amused by an example of her mathematical mind. Most people would call the first chapter of a book Chapter 1, but she starts out with Chapter -5. It goes from there to Chapter -4 and on to Chapter 0. These are all in Part 1, From Pen and Paper to Prayer. It isn’t until you get to Part 2, Getting Started, that Chapter 1 appears! I laughed out loud when I noticed this.

By the way, the other sections of the book, each with a few chapters, are

  • Part 3, The Practice,
  • Part 4, Using Praying in Color to…
  • Part 5, A Palette of Final Thoughts

This would make a marvelous book for a gift!

Here’s the image of the cover, and clicking on it takes you to its page on, where you can look inside the book and also read some of the many enthusiastic reviews.

A revised and expanded version came out more recently. It has a blue cover which makes it easy to see which edition you are looking at. I haven’t bought it yet but reviews say it has lots of new material. Click on the image to go see it:

The author has written a number of books related to this. There is one for kids, one in Spanish, one in Korean, one about using black and white, which she wrote with her husband, an Episcopal priest. You can find them all from her author page on

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