AS A SUPPLEMENT to my daily devotions, I'm reading "What Happens When I Pray?," a condensed version of the works of two not-so-famous classic Christian writers, Thomas Goodwin and Benjamin Palmer. My copy is published by Grace Publications Trust (London, England), and is a rewritten and abridged version prepared by Dr. N. R. Needham, in order to cater to a modern-day readership.
I plan to write more on this book as soon as I'm done. So far, though, it has already proven worthwhile. It has rebuked and reminded me so many crucial things in regard to prayer.
The following are some statements that stood out for me from the chapter, "The spiritual benefits of praying." I hope you find encouragement in them as well.
- In fact, prayer is one of God's chief ways of educating you spiritually. It's in the school of prayer that your soul will really develop, expand, and reach its highest enjoyment. (p. 36)
- The only way you can get satisfaction for your mind is to go to God across the bridge of prayer, and enter into fellowship with him, the supreme mind, the fountain of wisdom and truth. (p. 36)
- Praying also gives life to your heart, your spiritual emotions. As you pray, your spiritual vision will grow clearer. You will see that goodness isn't only your duty . . .; and sin isn't only wrong, but totally repulsive. True prayer makes the heart recoil with horror from all evil and rush forward with eager desire to embrace the good. (pp. 38-39)
- Fellowship with [God] is the bright glory of prayer. Think of it; you, a finite and created being, having personal prayer-communication with your infinite and holy Creator! (p. 39)
- There is no shyness or reticence in prayer. (p. 39)
- If you are going through some unhappiness that is too great for you to put into words, you can let yourself collapse in the Father's arms, and weep there. He will hold you. (p. 40)
- A prayerless person is like a prisoner locked up in the narrow darkness of the present. But the praying believer is like an eagle soaring through the sky in the light of the eternal sun. (p. 41)
I'm not sure if the book is available at our local bookstores; I got my copy at one of my church's book sale. Just drop a comment if you want to borrow mine.