This is an honest question I ask myself from time to time whenever I realize I’ve drifted from consistent or frequent prayer and devotion.
In discipleship and helping new Christians grow, I find myself often telling people that prayer should be a delight and not a chore. More often than not, prayer is often something believers know that we they should be “doing” but often need help to see it modelled.
I have read several books of Mike Bickle’s over the years, such as Growing in the Prophetic, The Pleasures of Loving God, and in 2010 I was given a copy of what would be my favourite of his to date: After God’s Own Heart: The Key to Knowing and Living God’s Passionate Love for You.
Depending on the circles you travel flow in, you may have a fond opinion of the International House of Prayer or if you do a Google search you might come across apologetics sites that paint him as a cult leader akin to Joseph Smith. Either way, I’ve appreciated much of what I’ve learned from Bickle over the years and have loved his Song of Solomon teachings.
His eschatology, not so much.
But at any rate, I recently lent my wife’s Spanish copy of After God’s Own Heart to our disciple, and afterward he decided to go on prolonged fasts. I remember the book had a similar impact on me back in the days when I first read it, so when I saw recently that Mike had written yet another book in a similar vein on prayer, I thought it couldn’t hurt to give it a read.
I do believe this is one of Mike’s most important books. If somebody were to ask me if I could recommend a book on prayer there are many that come to mind, I will now tell people to buy this book, but also read Dave Roberson’s FREE book The Walk of the Spirit, The Walk of Power: The Vital Role of Praying in Tongues. Mike condenses so much of the wisdom he has gained over the years of personal devotional prayer, intercessory prayer and leading prayer meetings into one book. If you get yourself settled on the role of praying in tongues, these two books can get you off to a great dedicated lifestyle.
Mike divides this book into 5 sections, and then with several appendices, and I only really take issue with the last section which focuses on “prayer in the last days”.
What I benefited from the most was the breakdown of many different types and principles of prayer, like basic things such as scheduling time to do so, and creating lists. As a result, I’ve copied the template he provides in the book for how to pray for family members, how to make lists, and in Evernote have begun incorporating Biblical prayers into a folder, and now I use my tablet a lot to help direct and guide me in my personal times of devotional prayer, as well as intercessional prayers. I don’t know why I was so nervous of writing things down in a journal or Evernote before as though that would stifle the flow of the Holy Spirit guiding me spontaneously before, but I’ve found the opposite to be true. It has been a tremendous help.
The book also looks at historical and biblical models of prayer and what God is doing around the world today with a converging prayer and missions movement. However, Mike doesn’t necessarily seem to realize that just because many people have done something a certain way throughout history, doesn’t always give credence to the idea that it is the way something should always be done.
If you want to pray more, if you want to see your relationship with God go to a different level of depth read a chapter then try it out.
Get a copy of Growing in Prayer: A Real Life Guid to Talking to God on Amazon.
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