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Book Brief: “A Praying Life”

Written by Don Bartemus on

The summary of A Praying Life by Paul Miller that Red Barn Church put out is the best I’ve seen. Follow that link and read the chapter-by-chapter explanation. Truly, I could not have done better.

So, rather than try, I would like to speak to you as a pastor. I would like to speak to you about what I have learned about prayer from this valuable book.

Between my home and my study, I own about two dozen books on the subject of prayer. I have read, written, watched about prayer for years. I have taught classes, led prayer meetings, and listened to great speakers, all about prayer.

As a pastor with many years of learning, there is one book I clearly recommend above all others on the topic of prayer. My number one recommendation for you is  A Praying Life by Paul Miller.

You can trust me—and the many people at College Park Church who have read and applied this wonderful book—it is absolutely worth reading.

Written by a man who made it through some tough personal situations, A Praying Life speaks to the regular person. It is easy to ready and relevant. According to pages 11 and 12, Miller wrote “family stories… of surviving and thriving in a world of stress and disappointment.” He wrote for Christians “struggling to do life, who pray badly yet long to connect with the heavenly Father.”

That description applies to so many of us, doesn’t it?

Prayer can cause confusion. Each one of us has asked the question, “What good does prayer do?”  and Miller asks the same. Prayer seems to work sometimes; and other times, not so much. Miller addresses this, summing up the thesis of his book in this:

“Many people struggle to learn how to pray because they are focusing on praying, not on God. Conversation is the only vehicle through which we experience one another. Consequently, prayer is not the center of this book. Getting to know a person, God, is the center. Prayer is not an isolated part of life. It is part of a relationship that must be participated in while you live life together with God.” (p. 20).

If you read A Praying Life, you will find it to be practical. You will find ways to practice praying that will change your relationship with the Father. As you read, you will realize that Jesus needed time with God just as much as we do. He prayed early and often, focusing on his relationship with his Father. That is what prayer is all about.

I encourage you to read the book. If you are not convinced, read the summary I referenced at the top of the article. If you are still not convinced, do it anyways!

Don Bartemus

Don Bartemus is the Pastor of Compassion Ministries at College Park Church. He and his wife, Cheryl, have been in ministry since 1981. Don believes Compassion Ministries exist to respond to the physical needs of people in order to participate in the fulfillment of the purpose of God in their lives.

Don came to faith in Christ at the age of five through a Christian family. He attended Cedarville University, received a B.A. in Bible. He attended Grace Seminary and earned a M.Div. in Biblical Studies and later a Doctorate of Ministries from Grace Seminary. Don and Cheryl have been in youth ministry, teaching ministries, and pastoring in the states of Iowa, Ohio, and Indiana.

He is passionate about caring for people through hard times and enjoys spending time with his wife, children, and grandchildren.

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