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Too Busy Not to Pray: Slowing Down to Be With God

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  7,287 ratings  ·  192 reviews
The 10th-anniversary edition of this popular book challenges you to take time to pray, to listen to God, to respond to what God is saying to you, and to overcome prayer barriers.
Paperback, 191 pages
Published April 1st 1998 by InterVarsity Press (first published 1988)
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Too Busy not to Pray (Slowing down to be with God)
Bill Hybels
Inter-Varsity Press
ISBN: 0-85111-329-X

I read this book as part of the preparation for the week of prayer at Christ Church. Our vicar Warner recommended it. The back cover overview starts "Why should we pray? How can we when we are so busy?". Thats covers some of the reasons why I wanted to read it. Others include the questions of technique - just exactly WHAT can you do that will help you engage with God. The clue to this is in the sub
Too Busy Not to Pray was a 15-week study with my women's bible study group. This study challenged us to slow down in our busy lives & take the time to pray. We learned about God calling us into his presence, inviting us to talk with Him continuously, methods to use to break down the barriers that prevent us from praying to God, recognizing how God speaks to our hearts, and most importantly listening to & taking action when God prompts us. In one of the lessons we contemplated on The Lord ...more
“When was the last time you prayed diligently over a period of time for your spouse, your parents or your children? Or for someone to come to know Christ? Or for peace in war-torn parts of the world? Or that God’s power would cause a revolution in your church? Or that God would put you to work for his glory?”

This is an excerpt from this month’s book and it has really challenged me to re-address my prayer struture and indeed my prayer life. I’ve come to realise that for a while my style of prayer
Easily read, very practical treatment of prayer, taking up the cause of the person who would like to or used to pray, with specifics on how to get going or resume. After discussing potential roadblocks--like holding grudges or sins we haven't given up--the author offers very practical suggestions on praying.

In summary, his method is a simple technique of single-page daily journaling (great for busy people and those who go way overboard). Divide your journal page with 2 titles: "Yesterday"--an e
I read this with a group of women at my church. Having not seriously prayed in 30+ years, I found the "instruction" quite good. However, as usually is the case with book clubs, the discussions we had, whether directly about this book or other things, was almost more useful than the book.

Here are a just a few (paraphrased) lines from the book which particularly resounded with me (recently returned to God):

-"Prayer is an unnatural activity...alien to our proud human nature".
-"It is hard for God to
Brent Soderstrum
Good book on a very important topic-our conversations with your creator. This book, along with a class I was taking at the same time, got me to make it more then a one way conversation with me doing all the talking. I learned the importance of listening and what to listen for. I also have learned to journal my prayers so I can re-examine them at a later point to see how God has answered my prayers. I know I love to hear from my kids so it should go without saying that God loves to hear from us.
Dec 01, 2007 Jon rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone needing help learning to pray
Shelves: prayer
Great introductory book on prayer--many books recommend too many things to implement. Bill Hybels gives a very readable, practical and inspiring way to pray daily that jump-started my prayer life when it was stalled. I wouldn't recommend someone to make this a formula for a lifetime of prayer, but it's a great structure to develop key habits and basic skills of prayer--which I use to this day.
Sydney Drinkwater
Excellent book. Clearly written for all "levels" of Christians with down-to-earth, practical advice I will be putting to use. Deeper thoughts mixed well with real-life stories made it a book easy to keep reading.
Has Reflection & Discussion questions in the back that would make for a good Bible Study with a small group. Hope to re-read again.
This really put things in perspective regarding busyness and spirituality. It isn't just a book stating reasons why we're too busy not to pray and doesn't make you feel completely guilty for putting spirituality on the back burner. Instead, it provides practical tips on how you can keep God first in all areas of your life and pray more.
Lance Lumley
Jun 26, 2015 Lance Lumley rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Christians and anyone who wants to slow down hectic lives
Recommended to Lance by: Good will
I read this book before and saw it at Goodwill and decided to re-read it. This is the 10th Anniversary Edition. Bill Hybels shows the reader tips on how to slow down from your busy lives in order to take the time to really pray, not just a quick "I need this now." He also discusses possible reasons why maybe people's prayers are not answered, and the importance of listening while in prayer. He also shows the reader some tips that has helped him, including writing a journal and what to include in ...more
Sep 05, 2009 Jessica rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Christians
I'm only half way through this book so far but it's really challenging my way of thinking about prayer (and how low on my priority list making time with God is). It's a very practical book with lots of tips, and has reminded me how important it is to pray!
I've started to get more interested in Christian books lately. This one was given to me as a grad present, and I really liked it. It was helpful and informative, as well as being interesting. I would definitely recommend it.
Melissa Andrews
This book was recommended to me by a friend, and I will be forever grateful. It's an easy to read book that's really powerful. Pastor Hybels reminds us why we need to pray, and gives practical illustrations of things we can do to make prayer a consistent part of our lives. His real-life examples work well. I liked that you were able to start implementing the ACTS method of prayer relatively early in the book, so that you could start working on your prayer life as you continue reading through the ...more
John Vanbrunt,
Too Busy Not to Pray
Bill Hybels

Chapter 6 which deals with Patterns for prayer is worth the price of the book alone.

Some takeaways from the 6th chapter:
All You have to remember is the word ACTS, acrostic 4 letters word -Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication

Adoration sets tone for entire prayer
-Reminds us of Gods identity & inclination ( I worship him for his Omnipotence)
-Purifies us who is praying Also, purges our spirt & prepares us to listen to God
-GOD is worthy of our Adora
Maria M. Elmvang
Oct 14, 2014 Maria M. Elmvang rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who want to get serious about their prayer life
Somebody recommended this book to me many years ago. I no longer remember who, and I'm not even sure I got the right book, as Jo Carro has also written one with the exact same title. However, I'd been utterly unable to find that one, and the library had this one, so I'm going to claim this was it! ;)

Besides, even if it wasn't, I'm SO glad I've read it. Bill Hybels tackles some of the large issues about praying - how to pray, when to pray (scheduled prayer time is just as important as spontaneous
I'm starting a prayer workshop at church to bring some discipline to my prayer life, which is spotty at best (and the discipline part is not easy. And like everything else, I started out the first week like a house afire, and last week...not so much. Gotta get back on track before Lent!) This book seemed to go hand in hand with that 7-week workshop just perfectly.

I was browsing Julia's coffee attached to the Habitat ReStore (my favorite used book store. Period.) and they have a small but great R
Neil Geisel
The message of this book moved me to action. I hope it does the same for you. God certainly speaks through the legacy others leave because of their writings. Bill Hybels uses his experience and his encounters with others to teach us about prayer. We can ignore it or use it and accomplish more of what we were created for. Praying is talking to our creator and strengthening our bond the most important relationship we will ever have or need.
Dominic Puccio
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Liu Jianqing
Thank the Lord for this book. I guess all Christians have prayed for the Lord to teach us how to pray. This book can really help us all.

Of course the book still deals with why we should pray and benefit, etc. The most useful part is that the author has shared with us his own methods. I have been practicing it since I read Chapter 9. It is challenging because it does consume a lot of time. But that is the whole point!

My prayer is that I will keep on praying fervently, regularly and persistently f
VERY easy read. I read it really fast, and I'm a slow reader. I think Hybels addresses your basic, common prayer questions/issues pretty well - this book would particularly be great for new/young believers, or Christians that just haven't explored what developing their prayer life could look like. Or Christians who think they know what prayer is all about. The book is great to read through once and then easily go back to reference a specific prayer topic or question.
Kathleen Yamauchi
Clearest most concise book on prayer yet. Pastor Bill Hybels gives plenty of practical guidelines in deepening our prayer life to bring us into a closer relationship with Christ. I expect to read this again soon - there is so much truth in this book!
Too Busy Not to Pray is a good beginner's book for anyone seeking to grow in their prayer life. Hybels sets a good foundation for the importance of prayer and for how to take baby steps to grow in the discipline of prayer.
This was my second reading of this book and I cannot say enough positive things about Bill Hybels style of writing. This book is written in such an easy and friendly style. He shares from his experiences, noting that he has not always been perfect in his prayer life. His style is welcoming and encouraging. I'd forgotten much of what I read the first time, and am putting this book on a must-read list for each January. What good are resolutions if we aren't spending time with the One who loves us ...more
Gene Cornett
This book had a profound effect on my praying because it strongly encouraged me to write my prayers, a practice I had dabbled with a little bit, but this set me on it for good.
A great book with life changing principles to apply to your life. I highly recommend to any serious Christian/person who wants to lead an examined life.
Maybe a bit too simple in theology sometimes, but really practical and challenging! My prayer life is in a better place because I read this book!
Mike Sanchez
Clear and concise. I've always thought I knew how to pray until I read this book. Buy this book (it's cheap), read it, then pass it on. Whoever you passed it on will surely not just thank you, but will definitely pray for you as well. I know I'm praying for my wife right now. :)
Kerrie Parker
This is one of my favorite books about prayer. I need to read it again because it has been quite some time since I read it.
Daniel Taylor
Apr 03, 2011 Daniel Taylor rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: New Christians and those who struggle with prayer
Until I picked up this book and did what it said, my prayer life was weak. Now, I have a daily prayer time that I look forward to, and I leave it charged with supernatural power.

In this book, Bill Hybels removes the barriers that keep people from approaching God in the first place and then he shows you how to speak to God. The final section is on listening to God and identifying whether a leading is indeed heaven-sent.

His advice is simple and relatable. You can take ideas from every chapter and
Jordan Hicks
really good stuff about developing a meaningful prayer life. Pastor Hybels presents the information with a really good balance of spiritual and practical teaching: developing prayer disciplines in everyday life for the purpose of tuning in to what God is doing.

Nothing in this book jumped out at me as new or revolutionary, but the wealth of insight and practical explanation would make this book ideal for anyone looking to build their prayer life from scratch.

best take-away for me: the couple of c
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A Study of the Word: prayer 6 10 Sep 22, 2013 04:10PM  
  • The Life You've Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People
  • Prayer: Does It Make Any Difference?
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  • Experiencing God: How to Live the Full Adventure of Knowing and Doing the Will of God
  • Just Like Jesus
  • Hearing God: Developing a Conversational Relationship with God
  • Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World: Finding Intimacy with God in the Busyness of Life
  • How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth
  • Victory Over the Darkness
  • The Complete Works of E.M. Bounds on Prayer
  • Spiritual Leadership
  • Uprising: A Revolution of the Soul
  • Loving God
  • Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home
Bill Hybels is the founding and senior pastor of Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Ill., and chairman of the board for the Willow Creek Association. The bestselling author of more than twenty books, including Axiom, Holy Discontent, Just Walk Across the Room, The Volunteer Revolution, Courageous Leadership, and classics such as Too Busy Not to Pray and Becoming a Contagious Christ ...more
More about Bill Hybels...
Courageous Leadership Just Walk Across the Room: Simple Steps Pointing People to Faith Becoming a Contagious Christian Axiom: Powerful Leadership Proverbs The Power of a Whisper: Hearing God, Having the Guts to Respond

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“it’s time to make a decision: I will learn what disciplines are necessary to fuel my prayer life, and I will practice these disciplines regularly, without fail.” 2 likes
“God doesn’t want us to pile up impressive phrases. He doesn’t want us to use words without thinking about their meaning. He wants us to talk to him as to a friend or father—authentically, reverently, personally, earnestly. I heard a man do this once when I least expected it.” 0 likes
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