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You can pray

By Tim Chester
July 2016 | Review by Noel Ramsey
  • Publisher: IVP
  • ISBN: 978-1-78359-084-1
  • Pages: 176
  • Price: 9.99

Book Review

Do you struggle to pray? Does your mind go blank as soon as you begin to pray? Often our personal experiences can be so negative, but this book is very positive about prayer — as the title suggests, ‘You can pray!’

The book is split into three sections: why prayer is easy (how we pray); why prayer is difficult (why we pray), and what we pray. The first section deals with how the Trinity is involved: the Father loves to hear us pray; the Son makes prayer pleasing to God; and the Holy Spirit helps us. This gives prayer a theological basis, which will motivate us to actually pray.

The second section deals with real difficulties we have with prayer, such as why we find other things more enjoyable than prayer; why other things seem more important, and why God does not seem to answer some of our prayers. We have an enemy who will do all he can to stop God’s people from praying, but Tim Chester gives practical suggestions that will help us win the battle and pray more consistently.

The final part concerns how we should pray. We are shown how to use scriptural arguments in prayer, and the importance of keeping the glory of God and our needs as priorities.

Tim Chester used his blog to research common problems and questions on prayer that believers have. The responses he received helped shape the book’s content.

The key test of any book about prayer is, does it make you want to pray more and do you actually pray more after reading the book? When it comes to this reviewer, the answer is a definite ‘yes’. I particularly benefitted from the way the Lord’s Prayer is used to demonstrate prayer priorities. The author concludes each chapter with a prayer found in the Bible that can shape our own personal prayers.

Noel Ramsey


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