Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Call to Spiritual Reformation; Book Review

A Call to Spiritual Reformation: Priorities from Paul and His Prayers

This was my first book by D. A. Carson and he did not disappoint in the least.  There are some books that when I read it I come away thinking, "That was a tour de force" meaning, the author thoroughly, systematically, and convincingly made a rock solid case.  Another book like that is Thomas Sowell's Knowledge and Decisions.  This book was one of those books.  Carson makes the case for modeling our prayers from after biblical and spiritual priorities (as opposed to the physical, and temporal priorities that so often fill our prayers).

This will probably be a top 5 book for the year for me and perhaps a top ten or twenty of all time.  Yes, it was that good.  That and it was also probably especially enlightening. For awhile I've been wanting to work on my praying.  But my oh my, where to begin? There's dozens of dozens of books out there.  An uncle had recommended this book years ago and I've finally got around to reading it.  When looking how to pray, seeing how the Apostle Paul did so is a good place to start and here Carson does just that, looking at eight of his prayers in particular.

Carson starts the book off with some practical thoughts advice such as: "Much praying is not done because we do not plan to pray", and "develop a system for your prayer lists."  That chapter alone is worth it's weight in gold.  Then Carson dives straight into the prayers of Paul.  I am amazed at how deep he digs.  I mean, these prayers aren't more than a few verses, yet he expounds on their meaning for twenty pages and sometimes prefaces an expository chapter with a chapter alone introducing the subject matter!

The book is heavy sledding, definitely not beach reading but well worth the time and thought you put into it.  If you're looking to work on your prayer life, and are especially interested in learning about the prayers in the New Testament, I heartily recommend this book to you.  You will be challenged and by God's grace, the priorities in your prayers will change.

In the next few weeks I'll be giving you a taste of it by posting some quotes from it here on the blog.

A Call to Spiritual Reformation: Priorities from Paul and His Prayers

1 comment:

Jeannette said...

Thanks for suggesting this book, Ben. I'm looking forward to your blog posts. I have read a couple Carson books, neither of which I found easy reading. His works take careful thought, but are worth it!