Book Review by Major Charity Kramerius
Personnel Officer – College For Officer Training
I recently read the book How to pray, a simple guide for normal people, by Pete Grieg. It’s a quick read, or a short audio book read by the author himself, a person whose clear passion for prayer lead him to co-found and promote the 24-7 Prayer movement around the world.
Mr. Grieg uses the Lord’s Prayer to challenge ordinary believers at all points in their faith journey to pray simple, honest and powerful prayers. It’s not a formula book – how often to pray, where to pray, specific words that would honor God or sway God’s heart. The focus is placed on form – having a genuine heart for God and pursuing a loving and deepening relationship with Him through prayer
Before I even read the first word of Chapter One, I was captured. I like to think of myself as normal and appreciate things put simply. In the intro “How to Read This Book in a Couple of Minutes,” I was challenged to pause. “To start we must stop. To move forward we must pause. This is the first step in a deeper prayer life: Put down your wish list and wait. Sit quietly. ‘Be still, and know that I am God.’” (pg. xiv). From the beginning, Mr. Grieg shares from his own experience. “Merely by showing up, you make a declaration of intent…After decades of night-and-day prayer, I have come to believe that 99 percent of it is just showing up: making the effort to become consciously present to the God who is constantly present to us” (pg. 10).
As women Officers, many of us are pulled daily in two opposing directions…be the heart of the ministry while keeping the show on the road at a heart-stopping pace. Balance family and ministry. Pursue and protect a personal time with God as well as serve others sacrificially. Mr. Grieg brings things back to the basics with the encouragement to keep our relationship and communication with God “real,” as a way of practicing God’s presence and receiving His power. I recommend this book and encourage listening to the audio version. The book is also the basis of a 24-7 Prayer video teaching series, The Prayer Course, available free online with a Toolshed of supporting materials.