Because prayer is direct access to the throne of grace, it should have a significant place in every believer’s life. But more often than not, prayer is the spiritual discipline that is the most quickly put off to the side.
Praying The BiblePraying by Donald Whitney gives some super straightforward and simple, but incredibly helpful and practical instruction on cultivating this important time of fellowship with the Lord.
The main premise of this little book is that we should use the Bible, and more specifically the Psalms, as a springboard for prayer. In other words, Whitney encourages us to incorporate the very words of Scripture into our prayers.
You could think of it as a conversation between you and God: God speaks through the pages of Scripture, and, as the words of Scripture prompt thoughts in your heart and mind, you respond by praying according to those thoughts.
For example, a while back, I actually wrote out my responses as I read the Psalms:
(The bold is the actual Psalm and the words [in brackets] are my response)
“Thou, O Lord, wilt not withold Thy compassion from me: Thy lovingkindness [every good and perfect gift is from above and all things work to make me like Himself. Nothing can separate me from His love] and Thy truth will continually preserve me [where but in God’s written Word do I find God’s Truth? I cannot underestimate the importance of saturating my soul with The Word!] Let all who seek Thee rejoice and be glad in Thee; [I worship the true God—I have reason to rejoice! Why do I allow myself to get discouraged when I above all people, have reason to rejoice? REJOICE!] Let those who love Thy salvation say continually: “The Lord be magnified!” [For He has done great things!] (Psalm 40:11-12, 16)
While this example is primarily a prayer of worship and praise, can you see how the Psalms (or any other portion of Scripture) is an effective way to help us focus our hearts and minds on Him and pray more Scripturally-accurate prayers?
I very much appreciated reading this book and have found it to be helpful in my prayer life!