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prayer tips

November 21, 2007

So yesterday I drew your attention – in passing – to a book you can download for free. An IHOP book. About prayer. I can’t imagine a situation that could require less nudging, but I will hereby proceed to nudge anyway.

It’s here.

It’s a lot longer than I thought it would be for a free book: 207 pages. Don’t tune me out yet.

The first thing I have to say about it – and I don’t think this has anything to do with my particular passions – is that it’s not written well. The language is not especially inspiring, and some of the dialogue is downright cheesy.

It has also been sending up some theological red flags. I realize that the angels are the big supporting actors in the story, but I got to the point where one of the main (human) characters asks for the gift of tongues, and gets it, and Holy Spirit never makes and appearance. Maybe I’m biased/defensive because I consider Holy Spirit one of my very best friends, but …

That said: it’s good. The point of the book is to explain the spiritual realm and the power of prayer, and the author evidently decided it would be most effectively done in the form of a story. She’s absolutely right. I’ve read a few books on prayer, and heard many a good sermon on the topic, but in two days (and I’m not even technically finished with it yet) it has reopened my eyes to the spiritual activity all around me and completely changed my prayer life. Really.

And while it’s not artistically written and I sometimes cringe at/skim over the dialogue (because it’s really drawn out because it’s trying to teach the reader), the story is good and when I had to leave it halfway through on Monday I was torn as to how Sarah would withstand the attacks coming against her and if Paul would ever lay down his pride.

Half of the story is about a woman named Sarah who meets the Lord at age 70. Her life’s call is to be an intercessor, and as she pushes through trial and learns to do that I’ve learned some fun things/tips about prayer. For example:

_ She prays for everyone. The girl she sees on a magazine cover at the grocery store. The laborer she thinks of when she reads the “Made in India” tag on her blouse. Her neighbors. The people who throw bricks through her window.

_ She covers her fridge in prayer requests from neighbors and outreach organizations like Voice of the Martyrs. She calls it her “Devotional Fridge.”

_ She determines to pray in the Spirit whenever she is not talking or eating, and picks a landmark to help remind her. When she discovers that prayer opens doors for the Lord to work, she uses doorways. Whenever she walks through a doorway she asks herself if she’s praying.

_ She decides, since praying in the Spirit takes no effort other than moving her lips, she can pray in the Spirit and pray with her understanding silently at the same time. Whenever she prays, she prays twice as much in the same amount of time.

There’s probably more, but that’s what I remember off the top of my head. You can download the book here.

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