Richard T.R. Sullivan, a retired laborer, has written a book aimed at defining what prayer is and how to make it powerful. In particular, he describes the type of heart and mentality that makes prayer both effective and ineffective.
Snippets of his own personal story emerge as he draws on his life for examples of common thoughts, feelings, and needs associated with prayer. Such passages serve as strong testimony to the effectiveness of his own prayer life, as he frequently states that his own education and intellect would not have been enough to help him write a book. He discloses having earned only a high school degree, yet his book is beautifully articulated, error-free and with a well-organized style.
Sullivan defines prayer as a heartfelt conversation between the believer and God, an expression of faith, and an opportunity to grow in wisdom. Since many believers struggle to pray daily, he explains why there is a need to pray, most importantly to demonstrate humility, which is expressed by glorifying and showing dependence on God, accepting God’s command to pray, and listening to Him.
Most thought provoking is his explanation that prayer is effective when performed in an attitude of thanksgiving and worship. To help readers grasp reasons to worship and things to be thankful for, he provides lists. Like many prayer books, he also addresses what inhibits God from answering prayers, especially emphasizing the need to tithe, as believers cannot expect to receive without first giving.
A few paragraphs here may feel a bit like personal tirades. While many readers will agree with most of these points, others may find them distracting. On the whole, however, believers will find this book inspirational and full of valuable tips for readying one’s heart and mind for prayer through worship and thanksgiving.
Also available in hardcover and ebook.