June 1st, 2009
Miller, Paul. A Praying Life. Colorado Springs: NavPress, 2009. 286 pp. $14.99. Purchase at Westminster Books.
Paul Miller is the executive director of SeeJesus.net, a web-based ministry dedictated to training men and women to lead small groups and outreach. Paul has always enjoyed teaching–he began his career as a teacher in the inner city of Philadelphia until God led him to join with his father, Dr. Jack Miller in founding what would later become World Harvest Mission.
Obviously, this book is about prayer. However, it is not a manual of how to pray better or be a better prayer warrior though both of those will come from practicing the principles found in its pages. You will learn how to pray like a child–you know how a child’s repetitive requests can be. You will be shown what it means to be helpless and in great need of God which will in turn drive you to your knees in prayer more and more.
The second part will challenge every reader to give up habits we have unwittingly allowed to dull our sense and need of prayer. Part three helps you shatter any remaining barriers (or at the very least recognize the barriers) that keep you from crying out to God in prayer. The fourth part details how praying brings us closer to God. Getting closer to God ultimately leads us to seeing Him and how He is working in our lives at every turn. The fifth and final part is like a tool box of prayer. Here, you will learn various ways to continue in prayer to God despite the craziness of every day life.
Much has been written on prayer and much will continue to be written on prayer. Apart from learning the art of praying through Scripture where your prayer guides are basically established, I found this book to be an invaluable resource for continuing in prayer. Paul Miller shares his life and struggles with prayer. In so doing, he becomes an accountability partner of sorts. Every time you look at this book, you will be reminded to pray.
Because of his openness to his struggles, you never think you have a resource written by a man sitting in a desk in an ivory tower. Rather, you get the feel of a man who has lived and learned. You find a man who has failed to live a life of prayer only to learn how to live a life of prayer. This invaluable resource should be ready by anyone wanting to answer the question, “Why can’t I be the man of prayer I know I need to be?”