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A Call to Spiritual Reformation

July 23, 2007

If you are like me, you struggle with prayer.  You usually have a list of who to pray for, and in some cases, you know of specific prayer needs, but half the time, you don’t know how to pray for your family.  Things are going well – your brother and sister are years from college decisions, and your parents seem set in their careers, and to make matters worse, you do not live with them, so you don’t have a day by day update on their progress.  There are no immediate prayer needs that you can see in their lives.  What do you pray for then?  Or what about friends you do not see on a regular basis anymore.  You want to pray for your high school friends, but do not know where to start.

DA  Carson’s book A Call to Spiritual Reformation addresses how we should pray for one another.  It will transform your prayer life if you allow it.  Carson looks at all the prayers Paul gives for the churches in his Epistles and uses these prayers to show us the things we should pray for when we are praying for one another.

Carson shows us that there is always something we can pray for.  One of the concrete examples I took from the book is where Paul says the following to the Philippians:

Philippians 1:9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, 10 so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

Basically, Paul shows us here that we can pray that the love of our brothers and sisters will abound more and more – that they will continue to live for God in all they do.

This book still inspires many of my prayers, and it is one of those that I know I need to read again in the future.  While praying that the physical needs of our brothers and sisters in the Lord be met is crucial, it is more important to pray for the state of their souls.  After reading A Call to Spiritual Reformation, I know I have no excuse to not pray for fellow believers.

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