Impacting Cities & Communities thru Prayer
A Community of Prayer Champions, Praying Churches, Prayed-for Communities
Title: Ready to Pray, A Spiritual Journey of Prayer and Worship and accompanying workbook.
Author: Gail E. Dudley
Publisher: Highly recommended Int'l
URLs: www.readytopray.info/Gail_s_Products.html and
This book actually has two volumes, the spiritual journey and the accompanying workbook. The first book, the one you find on Amazon, is a record of Gail's own personal spiritual journey of prayer and worship. This book is not written as a scholarly tome on prayer, nor is it a lecture from a know-it-all perfect saint. It is rather a heart-felt description of the real-life struggles God brought her through to get her where she is today. She is still a spiritual work in process and does not claim to have “arrived.”
The second volume is a great accompanying workbook. The workbook is a guide to help the reader go through their own journey as they develop a personal life of intercession and to gather a team of intercessors. It is a how-to book with many helpful tips. It probably deserves an entire review of its own.
After a brief discussion of the definition of prayer, Gail tackles prayerlessness, which she defines as lack of prayer. She gives some very important questions to ask when someone complains of prayerlessness: “Is there unforgiveness in your heart?” and “Are you sure God has not answered you and you are avoiding the answer?” She points out that fear of the second question often leads us to avoid praying altogether. Remember the old axiom “Don't ask the question if you can't stand the answer.” Sometimes we must ask the question and face the answer.
Gail then spends three chapters showing how prayer is really a search for the heart of God and the only way to find that is if we have a personal relationship with Him. Based on Psalms 63 and 92 and Proverbs 8, she suggests rising early to prayer is a great way to build that relationship.
The next chapters tell of her focus on intercession and further emphasizes that prayer is finding the heart of God.
One key phrase that caught my attention comes from a story in the introduction. “Because I had, for the first time in my life, prayed, 'Thy will be done' and actually meant it.” It was the change in the attitude of prayer from, “I need...” to a Christ-focused “Lord, what is it you want me to do?” that caused me to stop and reflect on my prayers.
This book would most benefit someone who is just starting on a prayer journey or someone who has already started, but has run into roadblocks of feeling that ones prayers are not being heard, concerns of guilt, or lack of direction or focus in prayer.
The workbook would benefit those who are ready to step into serious intercession, individually or as a group. The workbook itself may be hard to locate unless you go to the author. My copy did not have an ISBN number and was not listed on Amazon. I would suggest contacting Gail through the first web address listed above.
Questions for reflection:
1. Am I really ready to be serious about prayer?
2. Do I not “pray without ceasing” because it's too much work, or because I fear the answer, or do I really not believe?