If you are looking for a book on prayer, then you must read Philip Yancey’s book Prayer. This is such an excellent book. So what did you learn about prayer may be your question. Well, rather than explaining what I learnt about prayer, I can tell you one thing, this book really made me pray. Page after page and chapter after chapter, I stopped and went to pray. Don’t you think this is the success of the book?
Here is a beautiful paragraph from this book.
“Ben Peterson, currently chaplain at Westmont College, California, tells of a time when he ruptured a disc and the doctor prescribed six weeks of total bed rest. Heavily medicated and lying flat on his back, he found that reading was virtually impossible. In that incapacitated state, he learned an important lesson about prayer.
(He explains it in the following way)
“I was helpless.
I was also terrified. What was this all going to mean? How was I to take care of my family? What about the church? I was the only pastor it had, and I could do nothing for it. Out of sheer desperation I decided to pray for the church. I opened the church directory and prayed for each member of the congregation, daily. It took nearly two hours, but since there was nothing else I could do for the church, I figured I might as well pray for it. It was not piety that made me to do it, it was boredom and frustration. But over the weeks the prayer time grew sweet. One day near the end of my convalescence, I was praying and I told the Lord, “You know, its been wonderful, these prolonged times we’ve spent together. Its too bad I don’t have time to do this when I am well.”
God’s answer came swift and blunt. He said to me, “Ben, you have just as much time when you’re well as when you’re sick. It’s the same 24 hours in either case. The trouble with you is that when you’re well, you think you’re in charge. When you’re sick, you know you’re not.”
I pray that not only during tough times when we realize we need God’s strength but also during times when we are well we would pray and seek the Lord.