I’m reading a book called Prayer, written by O. Hallesby. It’s been a few years since I read a book on prayer (and I think I’ve only read maybe a few books ever on this topic). My daughter’s team is reading and discussing this book on their mission trip in Nepal, which is how I heard about this book. I’m not finished with this book yet, but here are a few excerpts:
“Before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear”- Isaiah 65:24….
“The air which our body requires envelops us on every hand. The air of itself seeks to enter our bodies and, for this reason, exerts pressure upon us. It is well known that it is more difficult to hold one’s breath than it is to breathe. We need but exercise our organs of respiration, and air will enter forthwith into our lungs and perform its life-giving function to the entire body.
The air which our souls need also envelops all of us at all times and on all sides. God is round about us in Christ on every hand, with His many-sided and all-sufficient grace. All we need to do is to open our hearts.
Prayer is the breath of the soul, the organ by which we receive Christ into our parched and withered hearts….
All he needs is access.” (pp. 13-14)
“Prayer is an attitude of our hearts, an attitude of mind. Prayer is a definite attitude of our hearts toward God, an attitude which He in heaven immediately recognizes as prayer, as an appeal to His heart. Whether it takes the form of words or not, does not mean anything to God, only to ourselves.
What is this spiritual condition? What is that attitude of heart which God recognizes as prayer? I would mention two things.
In the first place, helplessness.
This is unquestionably the first and the surest indication of a praying heart….
Prayer and helplessness are inseparable.” (p. 18)
I come now to another aspect of that attitude which constitutes the essence of prayer, that condition of the heart which God recognizes as prayer rising to Him from earth, whether it is uttered or not. ” (p. 28)
“The essence of faith is to come to Christ.
Such a faith as this sees its own need, acknowledges its own helplessness, goes to Jesus, tells Him just how bad things are and leaves everything with Him.
You and I can now tell how much faith we need in order to pray. We have faith enough when we in our helplessness turn to Jesus.” (p. 30)
“Prayer life has its own laws, as all the rest of life has. The fundamental law in prayer is this: Prayer is given and ordained for the purpose of glorifying God. Prayer is the appointed way of giving Jesus an opportunity to exercise His supernatural powers of salvation. And in so doing He desires to make use of us.” (p. 129)
Question: What are your favorite books on prayer?