I just finished an excellent book on prayer entitled Praying Backwards: Transform Your Prayer Life by Beginning in Jesus’ Name, by Bryan Chapell.
When we pray, we most often “sign off” by saying “in Jesus’ name, Amen”. But is this just Christianese for “over and out” or “yours truly”? Are we using the phrase as though these are the magic words that will make God hear and answer our prayer? Is tacking this phrase on at the end of our prayers really what Jesus meant in John 14:13-14?
Bryan Chapell shows us that praying in Jesus’ name means learning to let the Holy Spirit mold our prayers to conform to God’s desires. A quote by William Temple, included in the book, summarizes Praying Backwards well:
We do not pray in order to change His will,
but in order to bring our will in harmony with His.
For those who live in my area, Praying Backwards is available through the local library, but this is one you’re going to want to buy, along with a new highlighter. It’s that good.