I have read dozens of books on prayer. For years I have read books on prayer by such men as A.W. Tozer, Andrew Murray, and E.M. Bounds. I would classify these books in the category of “devotional prayer.” They are motivational in the sense of a closer walk with God. But two books that changed my paradigm on the power of getting our prayers answered were the following.
Prayer: Key to Revival by Paul David Yonggi Cho, radically changed my prayer paradigm. Cho, the late Korean pastor of the largest church in the world, shared how prayer has been the key to every revival. This was the most practical book I had read on prayer at the time. He wrote about what prayer does: produces power, brings brokenness, overcomes Satan, and opens the door to the Holy Spirit. He explained the different kinds of prayer: petition, devotion, and intercession. I still refer to this book whenever I need motivation for believing God for miracles.
Prayer: Asking and Receiving by John R. Rice. A really old book, written in 1942 with thirteen reprints through the years, no other book has so impacted my prayer life. The thesis of the book is that our God is a prayer-answering God. Prayer is primarily for asking God for what you need and then receiving from God the answer to your prayers. Prayer is asking and receiving from God. It is God’s nature to hear and answer prayer. If we are not seeing our prayers answered, the problem is with us—lack of faith, lack of persistence, lack of godliness, and lack of focus. Again, like Cho’s book, this book is very practical on how to pray with faith, how to pray with persistence, and the power of prayer and fasting.
Who Gets Sick: How Beliefs, Moods, and Thoughts Affect Your Health by Blair Justice, Ph.D. I have read many books on health. But this book rocked my world because Dr. Justice explains that pathogens (viruses, bacteria, etc.), the focus of the medical community, is rarely the major issue in who gets sick. All of us are exposed to pathogens every day of our life; but why, in the same environment, do some people get sick and others don’t? For example, the focus of the healthcare industry has for decades told us the most important aspects in health are avoidance of pollution, toxins, smoking, overcrowding, and overwork. But the Japanese lead the world in all these categories, yet they live longer, have a better quality of life, and have the lowest cancer and cardiac disease in the world. How can this be? Dr. Justice speaks of the importance of relationships in Japanese society and how valuable this is in being healthy. This is just one example of how important the spiritual, relational, and beliefs are in staying healthy. This book tremendously helped me in regulating my moods, living in joy, and forgiving others. I am healthier than ever in my life, largely because of the principles of this book.