Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)'s Reviews > Why Pray?: 40 Days-From Words to Relationship

Why Pray? by John F. Devries
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Jul 06, 12

bookshelves: spiritual-food, christian-living, christian-theology, favorites, yearly-reading-challenge, 2012-sky-s-the-limit-club, nonfiction
Recommended to Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) by: Church-wide initiative
Recommended for: Christians for enrichment of their prayer lives
Read from May 27 to July 05, 2012 — I own a copy, read count: 1

How do I condense 40 days of learning into one reasonable length review? Don't think I can do that.
All I can do is say what this book has done for me. So that's what I'll do.

I have been a Christian for a long time. However, I don't think I really accessed most of that power that comes from being a follower of Christ. Prayer is that key, that instrument to access the power that Christ gave all his believers in his ministry, persecution, crucifixion, death, and resurrection from the grave. Jesus prayed, all the time. And he is the living God. But he needed to access the power of God while he was in a fully human body. He did this through prayer. Jesus prayed through some of the most painful times in his life. When he and his disciples had material needs to be met. When he was tempted by the devil for 40 days, when he knew he was going to be tried and crucified. His last night before he was crucified, he prayed so hard that he sweated blood. If my Lord prayed, and I follow him as my model, then how could I not pray every day of my life, not just in the worst moments, but in the best, and in everything between? That would be huge folly on my part not to follow his model. The disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray and he told them to say what we know as The Lord's Prayer:

‘Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread.

Forgive us our debts,

as we also have forgiven our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from the evil one.'

Matthew 6:6-13

I learned to say this prayer when I was a very young girl, but I didn't realize the absolute power in it until I read this book. God still blessed me in my life despite that. But there is so much more God can do with his children if we only ask him. Let me tell you, practically every need you would have as a human being can be met through this prayer. God will supply all your needs. He's just waiting for you to ask him to do it. And also you should pray this when you pray for others. They need the same things and this prayer accesses the unlimited resources of heaven to give them what they need. Sometimes we see so much hopelessness and it makes feel us helpless. Well, believers in Christ are not helpless in any way. Even if we can't reach out and touch and physically help someone, we can pray for them, and there is power in that prayer. Merely using The Lord's Prayer. Now, I have learned to pray it out loud and let every line resonate through my spirit. You see, there is power in God's word. When we pray God's word, he hears us. He hears the prayers of the believers (and even those who don't know him but are seeking to know him and need his help) anyway, but God will always honor his word. If it says that he will give us our daily bread, then he will do it (and I truly have found that out in this season of my life). This book helped me to understand this, that I should use my prayers with power. Not demanding anything from God, but agreeing with him in what he says in his word.

I will honestly admit that prayer is something I've done half-heartedly most of my life. It's very foolish of me. As a believer in Jesus, why wouldn't I want to spend time with him? And that's what prayer is. Prayer is fellowship with the Living God. He loves us and he wants to spend time with us. Does he need us? No, but he takes great joy in us, his children. I think it's like if you are a parent and your children don't ever want to spend time with you. It must feel bad to know they don't care to spend time with you. Well, I know that God loves me so much, and because of his love, I love him so much, quite desperately. So now, even when I don't feel like praying, I still pray, because the power of agape love gives us the strength to break through the barriers that come between us and those who we share a relationship with. God doesn't care for fancy gestures, just a sincere heart. The Holy Spirit will make the words when we need them. And let me tell you, whenever I pray and spend time with God, the peace that comes into my heart is like nothing else, no matter how bad things seemed before I started praying. It's like being wrapped in his arms. My insides become suffused with a powerful light. There is no substitute for fellowship with the Living God. This book has encouraged me to dive into experiencing the presence of the Living God. And I know that I don't need to be ashamed of my sins and shortcomings, afraid to approach my father in heaven, and Jesus my lord. The Lord paid for my cleansing from sin and he has promised that I can always approach him in confidence. Now I cast all that at the Lord's feet, and I know he can do better with it than I can. Every believer has this right and privilege.

Another incredible revelation that this pilgrim has discovered is the incredible supernatural power that we can harness through prayer. Jesus said that anything he did, we could do.

I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. John 14:12-14

That means heal the sick, provide for material resources, protection from spiritual and physical enemies, and yes, even raising the dead. How do we access this? By praying in confidence (not in ourselves but him) as the Lord did. That doesn't mean fancy prayers. Jesus didn't pray 'fancy'. He prayed with faith and humility. That's all that we have to do as believers in him. This is not just me saying this. This is in the Word, which is the inerrant essence of God.

The very essence of your words is truth; all your just regulations will stand forever. Psalm 119:60

Oh goodness. Very hard to condense all of this. I'm getting excited to write this, to share this incredible message through this review. Let me talk about the writing a little. Mr. Devries has a good way of illustrating his points. He tells stories of his life and what he's seen and had others tell him. They are very good at bringing the importance home of the power of prayer. Some of the stories had my jaw dropping. The supernatural happening right here in the middle of this mundane world. And it has encouraged me to follow this model of prayer and marvel and praise God for doing what he promised to do. I think that Mr. Devries sets challenges out there for the readers. Some of his guidelines may not work exactly as he suggested, but don't let that turn you off his message. The essence of what he is saying definitely has merit, and this is a very good starting point for a Christian who doesn't feel like they are very good at prayer.

I am very grateful that my church decided to read this book as a group, and even provided free copies to everyone. The blessings reaped are without measure. I would recommend this book to Christians--old and new--who want to understand just how valuable prayer is.

Overall rating: 4.5/5.0 stars.
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Reading Progress

07/05/2012 page 265
100.0% "What a great experience. It will take me a while to get my head together to write a review, but I will post one!"

Comments (showing 1-35 of 35) (35 new)

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 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) This is a church-wide initiative in which we read one chapter a day at home and participate on the Point of Grace blog.


 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Thoughts on Day 13 Reading: With all humility I say I have read the New Testament three times, but I am truly understanding what everything means now. I am getting to know my Lord so much better now. Not just what he did, but why. To see Jesus praying through both the small and big, the most painful, and pivotal moments of his ministry is a huge reminder to me. I need to do the same, and the results are so much better in the end. So I appreciate you saying that you had to be convicted on how you perceived this writing Delton (my pastor). It makes me see that I am not alone in needing for God to show me a new way of looking at things.

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Thoughts on Day 14 Reading: This is my season of truly learning to wait on the Lord. I am a very impatient person. I pray for patience, and God answers my prayers by causing me to perfect patience the hard way. That is a good thing. When we wait in the Lord, he always comes through and blesses us in ways we never thought possible. And I personally believe that with time, that waiting becomes easier because we know that God will always be faithful.

message 4: by Vincent (new)

Vincent Chough Danielle, this is wonderful. Thank you for sharing this process with us.

message 6: by Lawrence (new) - added it

Lawrence Danielle, this is awesome and thank you for sharing and touching your Christian brother. I really needed to see and hear this because I'm a believer in the word of God and I'm standing on his promises no matter what comes or goes...I'm standing tall. Thanks again & may our God continue to bless you with more encouraging words.

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Lawrence, I am so glad to share this with others. It was a true blessing! May God bless you. I know he will. He is faithful!

message 9: by Erika (new) - added it

Erika Beautiful Lady D :)

message 12: by Ally72 (new)

Ally72 Wonderful review, Danielle! I think it is so neat that your church read this too.

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Thanks, Ally. It was quite a blessing. We have a blog where people went and commented on the reading.

Erin (Paperback stash) *is juggle-reading* Lady Danielle aka The Book Huntress wrote: "Thanks for reading, Erika and Erin!"

Of course :)

message 15: by Melissa (new)

Melissa Lovely review.

message 17: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Whitley his is one of the most eloquent and powerful book reviews I've seen on Goodreads!
I know all that you've said to be true through my own life. When I was young, I used to think you had to say flowery formal words in prayer, and then one day the idea just clicked, that God made us the way we are, therefore He loves us the way we are, sso we should just ttalk to Him the best we can. These days, I talk to God a LOT, in good times and in bad, and it makes His presence that much more prominent in my life.

Erin (Paperback stash) *is juggle-reading* Rachel wrote: "his is one of the most eloquent and powerful book reviews I've seen on Goodreads!
I know all that you've said to be true through my own life. When I was young, I used to think you had to say flowe..."

This is very true to remember and such an inspiration to us all, thanks for writing it

message 19: by Jocelin (new)

Jocelin This is the wonderful thing about being a Christian. When you read The Bible, you always learn something new and it has an impact on your faith. It never gets old. Thank you for sharing your review.

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Rachel wrote: "his is one of the most eloquent and powerful book reviews I've seen on Goodreads!
I know all that you've said to be true through my own life. When I was young, I used to think you had to say flowe..."

Oh that means a lot, Rachel. I think that we can put God into a box of our human expectations, when all he wants is to have a relationship with him. That is a beautiful joy to discover throughout our lives as we walk with him and learn more and more how much he loves us.

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Jocelin wrote: "This is the wonderful thing about being a Christian. When you read The Bible, you always learn something new and it has an impact on your faith. It never gets old. Thank you for sharing your review."

Thanks for reading, Jocelin. Very true about The Bible. New dimensions come to me through the revelation of the Holy Spirit as I read it.

Ezinwanyi~the Impish Angel  (Oh My Shelves) Nice D!
What a way to start my monday. There is Power in the Word, right?

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Thanks, E. So much power! I hope you have a good day!

message 24: by Sath (new)

Sath That was a very powerful, personal, moving review! Thankyou for sharing that with all of us. And you never know it may even inspire lazy little me to pray more often... one can hope! :)

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Sath, I'm glad to help. We all walk that road, and by sharing our struggles and triumphs, we can help each other.

Jesse DuPlantis, a preacher says that we should just focus have a relationship with Jesus and be his friend. He says he just says hi to him and asks how he's doing. It sounds silly, but that has helped me to make prayer about fellowship, and not a duty.

message 26: by Brylit (new)

Brylit Blessings and hugs for you and I'm so happy to read such a wonderful review that is a testimony of good things that can happen. I love reading about the real life experiences of different people from all parts of the world. Your response to Zahu touches me deeply.
Your review is honest and heartfelt and I enjoy the blog as well. Keep on reading and sharing. Brylit :)))

message 28: by Vincent (new)

Vincent Chough Danielle,
I'm so thankful for this review you wrote and for the fire of your faith. What a great response it has produced.
Sending a blessing and a prayer your way!

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) Vincent, all glory belongs to God in Jesus Christ (who has drawn me to him with his beautiful, irresistible love and Grace), but I am glad I was able to share my testimony with others.

Blessings and prayers back to you!

message 31: by Brylit (new)

Brylit Thanks!! :) Brylit

Erin (Paperback stash) *is juggle-reading* Lady Danielle aka The Book Huntress wrote: "This is a good primer on prayer:


Thanks for the link, think I may pick up the guide sometime. Not a bad price and looks useful as a good reminder to keep passing by.

Kelly H. (Maybedog) Thank you for sharing this. I love to learn about my friend's beliefs and I feel honored to get to know you a little better.

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja) You're welcome, Erin.

Thanks for reading, Kelly.

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