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Four Kindle Works You Need on Prayer

Prayer is so vital to the life of the disciple of Jesus that Jesus said that His disciples would pray (Matthew 6:5).  Our Lord’s own prayer life was so powerful that His disciples came to Him and asked Him to teach them how to pray (Luke 11:1).  Oh how often have I prayed those words to Jesus!  Oh how often have we neglected to seek God in prayer!

I urge you to read these books and allow the Holy Spirit to purge you of laziness in prayer.

1.  The Path of Prayer by Samuel Chadwick.  Only $0.99 and this book is full of wisdom form a man of prayer.  He was the master of Cliff College when Leonard Ravenhill was a student there.

2.  Why Revival Tarries? by Leonard Ravenhill.  Great book that first challenged this vessel to prayer.  Brother Leonard had a way with words and his prophetic voice is missed in the church.

3.  Praying Hyde by E.G. Carre.  John Hyde was a great man of prayer and you’ll be challenged as you read his stories.  Brother John was such a man of prayer that he earned the nickname “Praying Hyde” and “Apostle of Prayer.”  Like Rees Howell, Praying Hyde knew how to touch the throne of God and God heard his cries often.

4.  The Complete Collection of E.M. Bounds on Prayer.  E.M. Bounds was a man of prayer.  Most of his works came after his death in which he left behind his notes on prayer.  Bounds was a Confederate chaplain during the American Civil War but he learned how to pray and God heard his cries and saved many souls during the Civil War through this man’s preaching.  He was imprisoned by the Union and there he taught others how to seek God.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

06/08/2013 at 10:00 AM

How To Develop a Stronger Prayer Life

Let me briefly give you some pointers to developing a stronger prayer life.  These points have been points that I myself have put into practice in my own prayer life.  No doubt we all know that God wants us to pray (Jeremiah 33:3).  Jesus said that His disciples would be a people of prayer (Matthew 6:5).  It was the prayer life of Jesus (and not His teaching or His miracles) that the disciples wanted to learn about the most (Luke 11:1).  Paul admonished the Thessalonians to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17 NKJV) and he told the disciples in Colosse to “continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving” (Colossians 4:2 NKJV).  Revelation 5:8 records that the prayers of the saints rise up before the throne of God.  How vital then prayer is to the disciple!

How can we then strengthen our prayer lives?  Here are some quick points.

1.  Meditate on “Prayer” Scriptures.

Meditating upon the Word of God is so important (Psalm 1:1-3).  The Word of God is our delight (Psalm 119:162).  Jesus said that we were to abide in His teachings (which is His Word) to be His faithful disciples (John 8:31-32; cf. Matthew 7:24-27).  The Word of God is the only weapon the disciple is given to combat Satan and the lies of the world (Ephesians 6:17).  We are to renew our minds which can only occur in the Word of God (Romans 12:1-2).

I advise taking the “prayer” Scriptures and writing them down where you can read and re-read them to meditate upon them.  Passages such as 1 Samuel 12:23; Matthew 6:5-13; 7:7-11; 21:22; Mark 11:22-24; Luke 18:1-8; John 14:13-14; Romans 12:12; Ephesians 6:18; Philippians 4:6-7; Colossians 4:2; etc.  I would urge you to study all the major passages on prayer.  A good book on this is the book, The Spirit Helps Us Pray: A Biblical Theology of Prayer.  

2.  Study the Lives of Great Intercessors.

Study the lives of great prayer warriors such as John Hyde, David Brainerd, Leonard Ravenhill, E.M. Bounds, Andrew Murray, Charles Spurgeon, Rees Howells, David Livingstone, John Wesley, Martin Luther, and many more.  John Bunyan was a great man of prayer.  William and Catherine Booth, founds of the Salvation Army, were great intercessors.  Read and study their lives and imitate their faith in God (Hebrews 13:7).

3.  Read Books on Prayer.

A few books that I would highly recommend would be Why Revival Tarries? by Leonard Ravenhill, The Complete Works of E.M. Bounds on PrayerPrayer by John Bunyan, A Method of Prayer by Matthew Henry, and The Path of Prayer by Samuel Chadwick.  

4.  Pray With Other Intercessors.

Find some men of God (if you’re a man or find women if you’re a woman) who seek God earnestly and pray with them.  Lay aside your Arminianism or your Calvinism to seek God with your brethren.  As long as we are orthodox in our theology over the major issues, seek God with such folks.  There is so much to learn from praying with others.  I first learned how to pray by praying with some older saints who are now with Jesus.  They taught me how to tarry in God’s presence, how to seek God earnestly for who He is not what we can get from Him, to learn to view prayer not as merely asking for things but to know God and love on Him in worship.  1 Timothy 2:8 should guide us here.

5.  Pray! 

To read on prayer or study Scripture on prayer or to meditate on prayer is not the same as praying.  Prayer must be practiced.  To merely talk about prayer is not the same as praying.  I know of churches that faithfully preach the Word of God and can expound on prayer but if they just talk about prayer, what is the point?  Prayer must be “worked” out.  Prayer must be something that we don’t just study but earnestly do (James 5:16-18).  The key difference between us and the early Church is not so much theology but its practice (Acts 2:42-47).  Prayer is important and powerfully because of who we are seeking, the sovereign God of the universe.  Let us pray!

Written by The Seeking Disciple

11/02/2012 at 8:48 PM

Why Revival Tarries?

I was saved in 1992 and for the first two years of my Christianity, I can say that it was lukewarm at best.  My prayer life and my passion for God in His Word were not on fire at all.  In 1994 I went to the mountains and on the way I stopped at a small Christian bookstore in Pickens, SC and there I purchased a book by an author that I had heard of when reading Keith Green’s biography, No Compromise.  His name was Leonard Ravenhill.  The book was Why Revival Tarries?

There are few books that consume a person like this one did for me.  Ravenhill wrote later about the first time he read a book by E.M. Bounds while attending college in England.  He says that instead of him reading Bounds, Bounds went through him.  Bounds challenged Ravenhill to commit himself to a life of prayer and a passion for revival was born.  Ravenhill’s two mentors were the late Samuel Chadwick who himself wrote several books on prayer and holiness that are powerful reads and the late A.W. Tozer who also taught Ravenhill how to pray and adore God.  From Bounds and Chadwick and Tozer came Leonard Ravenhill’s passion for prayer that he captured in his book Why Revival Tarries?.

The book is simply a profound book.  Like few books this book challenged me toward prayer like I had never been challenged before.  I remember that night after spending the day reading Ravenhill’s book, I lay on the floor and wept over my lack of passion for revival and my lukewarm prayer life.  I wept over the lost and the countless souls that I had passed by and never uttered one word of salvation in Christ.  I wept over my lack of passion for the Word of God.  The tears flowed that night and I repented deeply from my heart for my sinfulness by failing to love Jesus with all that was in me (Mark 12:29-31).

Leonard Ravenhill was a man of prayer.  A couple of friends and I drove all the way to Texas to meet Leonard Ravenhill who would die just a few months later.  At that time Ravenhill was having prayer meetings at his home where men of God would come and pray for hours.  Ravenhill was known to pray as much as 9 hours a day before he died.  His heart wept for the lost, for the glory of God to be restored to His Church, and for the Church to awaken herself in prayer.  He would read 1 Samuel 12:23 and weep over the sinfulness of not seeking God in the Church.  Ravenhill truly was a prophet of God who called the people of God to holiness, to exaltation of Christ alone, and to prayer.  I have never met a man like him.

I hear people make excuses about their lack of prayer.  Too busy.  Too full of ministry.  Too tired.  I hear people say things such as, “God wants quality praying and not just quantity praying” but sadly I have found He gets neither.  We claim that Jesus is our life, that He is our passion, that He is our desire yet is He?  What consumes you?  Does prayer and seeking God’s face consume you?  Is your number one passion the presence of God in your life?  Is prayer a top priority or just something you religiously do or do when you are in dire straits?  Prayer must be a priority as prayer demonstrates, unlike many other things, our faith in Christ.  If we fail to pray it’s because we really don’t believe in the power of God.  We believe in our own wisdom, our own power, our own ways.  Prayer must be a focus.

Sadly, I know few churches who are committed to radical revival praying.  Prayer breeds revival.  The great revivals under Edwards or Wesley were started and sustained through faithful praying.  In fact history records that every great revival came when people started praying with fire.  Even the day of Pentecost came with people praying in the upper room (Acts 1:14).  The book of Acts goes on to record by the inspiration of the Spirit that the early Church prayed (Acts 12:5 for example).  The Epistles are full of references to prayer.  Even Revelation 5:8 tells us that the prayers of the saints rise up before the throne of Almighty God.

And yet few today pray.  When Ravenhill died in 1994 his wife Martha stated through tears that he was heartbroken that he never saw a true biblical revival in his lifetime.  For years Leonard Ravenhill had prayed for revival to fall on the Church.  He was heartbroken over the playing in the Church and not the praying in the Church.  In Why Revival Tarries? Ravenhill calls the prayer meeting the “Cinderella of the Church.”  Once Leonard was invited to preach at a church a series of meetings that they were calling a “revival” and before he preached the first sermon he walked down the stage at this large church and asked the pastors from the church to come up front.  He then went one by one to them asking them how much time do they regularly give to prayer.  Hardly any were truly praying.  Brother Leonard went up and said, “I have no reason to believe from the utter lack of praying from your pastors that you desire revival.  You came to hear a good sermon and not to seek God.  That is not my heart and I want nothing of it.”  And he walked out.

Oh how I long to pray with fire like that!  I want to be desperate for my Jesus.  I don’t want to sit around and talk about Jesus or think about Jesus but I want to seek Him.  He is worthy to be praised and He is worth more to me than life itself (Luke 14:25-35).  Jesus taught us to pray always and not lose heart (Luke 18:1) and that is just what I want to do.  I want to be a man of prayer.  Above being an expositor of the Word or a great theologian or a great husband, I want to first and foremost be a man of prayer.

The great hymn O Breath of Life by Mrs. B.P. Head is worth reading and taking to heart.

O Breath of life, come sweeping through us,
Revive Thy church with life and power;
O Breath of life, come, cleanse, renew us,
And fit Thy church to meet this hour.

O Wind of God, come bend us, break us,
Till humbly we confess our need;
Then in Thy tenderness remake us,
Revive, restore, for this we plead.

O Breath of love, come breathe within us,
Renewing thought and will and heart;
Come, Love of Christ, afresh to win us,
Revive Thy church in every part.

O Heart of Christ, once broken for us,
’Tis there we find our strength and rest;
Our broken, contrite hearts now solace,
And let Thy waiting church be blest.

Revive us, Lord! Is zeal abating
While harvest fields are vast and white?
Revive us Lord, the world is waiting,
Equip Thy church to spread the light.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

05/28/2012 at 10:42 PM

One Note on Modern Books on Prayer

I mentioned in a previous post my disdain for many books that I have read on prayer as of late by modern writers.  I want to add that I find it interesting that when you read older books on prayer such as E.M. Bounds, Samuel Chadwick, John Bunyan, or Charles Spurgeon, they rarely use any personal illustrations and in fact don’t rely on many illustrations at all.  R.A. Torrey might be the exception to this in his book, How To Pray.  Leonard Ravenhill, as far as I have read, never used personal illustrations much in his books other than telling a brief story about purchasing a book by E.M. Bounds on prayer while in college.  It seemed the older books on prayer focused entirely on prayer and the Scriptures.  I find comfort in that much more than in story after story about the author and their “great faith.”  What we really need to hear is not how God provided you with your 100,000 square foot building but what the does the Scriptures teach on prayer.

Just another reason I enjoy older books on prayer.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

01/21/2012 at 5:53 PM

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