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Best Em Bounds Quotes on Prayer Life

E. M. Bounds (1835-1913) was trained to be a lawyer before he entered the ministry during his twenties. Throughout his life he was a man deeply devoted to prayer who has inspired many through his books on prayer including: Through Prayer, The Essentials of Prayer, The Necessity of Prayer, and The Weapon of Prayer. Through his writings he has inspired many to deepen their dependence on God and usefulness to God through prayer. I hope these quotes do the same for you.

The Best E.M. Bounds Quotes on Prayer:

“God shapes the world by prayer.” E. M. Bounds

EM Bounds Quotes about Prayer“Prayers outlive the lives of those who uttered them; outlive a generation, outlive an age, outlive a world.” E. M. Bounds

“The prayers of God’s saints are the capital stock in heaven by which Christ carries on His great work upon earth.” E. M. Bounds

Ask of me is the one condition God puts in the very advance and triumph of His cause.” E. M. Bounds

“The secret of success in Christ’s Kingdom is the ability to pray.” E. M. Bounds

“The most important lesson we can learn is how to pray.” E. M. Bounds

“The story of every great Christian achievement is the history of answered prayer.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer is the one prime, eternal condition by which the Father is pledged to put the Son in possession of the world. Christ prays through His people.” E. M. Bounds

“We do more of everything else than of praying.” E. M. Bounds

“I think Christians fail so often to get answers to their prayers because they do not wait long enough on God.” E. M. Bounds

“Walking with God down the avenues of prayer we acquire something of His likeness, and unconsciously we become witnesses to others of His beauty and His grace.” E. M. Bounds

“I purpose to take occasion of praying upon the sight of any church which I may pass, that God may be worshipped there in spirit, and that souls may be saved there.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer with so many of us is simply a form of selfishness; it means asking for something for ourselves—that and nothing more.” E. M. Bounds

“This is not a praying age; it is an age of great activity, of great movements, but one in which the tendency is very strong to stress the seen and the material and to neglect and discount the unseen and the spiritual.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer is the greatest of all forces, because it honours God and brings Him into active aid.” E. M. Bounds

EM Bounds Quotes on Prayer“We cannot run our spiritual operations on the prayers of the past generation.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer is our most formidable weapon, but the one in which we are the least skilled, the most averse to its use.” E. M. Bounds

“The first and last stages of holy living are crowned with praying. It is a life trade.” E. M. Bounds

“We are in danger of substituting churchly work and a ceaseless round of showy activities for prayer and holy living. A holy life does not live in the [prayer] closet, but it cannot live without the closet.” E. M. Bounds

“None but praying leaders can have praying followers.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer is not the foe to work, it does not paralyze activity.  It works mightily; prayer itself is the greatest work.” E. M. Bounds

“The [prayer] closet…is the battlefield of the Church; its citadel; the scene of heroic and unearthly conflicts.” E. M. Bounds

“The secret of prayer and its success lie in its urgency. We must press our prayers upon God.” E. M. Bounds

“We can do nothing without prayer. All things can be done by importunate prayer.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer in its highest form and grandest success assumes the attitude of a wrestler with God.” E. M. Bounds

“Pray and never faint, is the motto Christ gives us for praying.” E. M. Bounds

“The Gospel cannot live, fight, conquer without prayer—prayer unceasing, instant and ardent.” E. M. Bounds

“Secret praying is the test, the gauge, the conserver of man’s relation to God.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer is the mightiest agent to advance God’s work.” E. M. Bounds

“A revival of real praying would produce a spiritual revolution.” E. M. Bounds

“The possibilities of prayer run parallel with the promises of God.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer puts God in the matter with commanding force.” E. M. Bounds

“We are charged in God’s Word ‘always to pray,’ ‘in everything by prayer,’ ‘continuing instant in prayer,’ to ‘pray everywhere,’ ‘praying always.’” E. M. Bounds

“When prayer fails, the world prevails.” E. M. Bounds

EM Bounds Quotes about Prayer and Holiness“He who is too busy to pray will be too busy to live a holy life.” E. M. Bounds

“A holy life is the only preparation for prayer.” E. M. Bounds

“We pray feebly because we live feebly.” E. M. Bounds

“The conditions of prayer are well ordered and clear—abiding in Christ; in His name.” E. M. Bounds

“Prayer is the helpless and needy child crying to the compassion of the Father’s heart and the bounty and power of a Father’s hand.” E. M. Bounds

“Part of the blame lies at our door. If we do our part, God will do His. Around us is a world lost in sin, above us is a God willing and able to save; it is ours to build the bridge that links heaven and earth, and prayer is the mighty instrument that does the work.” E. M. Bounds

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John-Piper-Romans-5-8-reciting-from-memoryHere is the most important paragraph John Piper has ever read:

God is glorified within Himself these two ways: 1. By appearing… to Himself in His own perfect idea [of Himself], or in His Son, who is the brightness of His glory. 2. By enjoying and delighting in Himself, by flowing forth in infinite . . . delight towards Himself, or in his Holy Spirit…So God glorifies Himself toward the creatures also in two ways: 1. By appearing to… their understanding. 2. In communicating Himself to their hearts, and in their rejoicing and delighting in, and enjoying, the manifestations which He makes of Himself…God is glorified not only by His glory’s being seen, but by its being rejoiced in. When those that see it delight in it, God is more glorified than if they only see it. His glory is then received by the whole soul, both by the understanding and by the heart. God made the world that He might communicate, and the creature receive, His glory; and that it might [be] received both by the mind and heart. He that testifies his idea of God’s glory [doesn't] glorify God so much as he that testifies also his approbation of it and his delight in it. (source)

Found in: “Jonathan Edwards, The “Miscellanies,” ed. by Thomas Schafer, The Works of Jonathan Edwards, vol. 13, ed. Thomas Schafer (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1994), 495, Miscellany #448.”

Sound familiar?

God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him. John Piper



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“Prayer is the way that the life of God in us is nourished.” Oswald Chambers 

One of my reading resolutions is to read for Christian growth. I agree with the above Chambers quote and I think that we should constantly seek to improve our prayer lives buy whatever means possible.

The best way to improve our prayer lives should be obvious: praying. Reading great books is another way to improve your prayer life as well. The books below will encourage and equip you to develop a prayer life conformed to the Word and the heart of God.

10 Recommended Books on Prayer

1. Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God by Timothy Keller

The Most Comprehensive Pick

The New York Times bestselling author and renowned pastor explores the power of prayer.

Christians are taught in their churches and schools that prayer is the most powerful way to experience God. But few receive instruction or guidance in how to make prayer genuinely meaningful. In Prayer, renowned pastor Timothy Keller delves into the many facets of this everyday act.

With his trademark insights and energy, Keller offers biblical guidance as well as specific prayers for certain situations, such as dealing with grief, loss, love, and forgiveness. He discusses ways to make prayers more personal and powerful, and how to establish a practice of prayer that works for each reader.

Read my review or buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

2. A Call to Spiritual Reformation: Priorities from Paul and His Prayers by D.A. Carson

Find a Great Prayer Mentor in Paul

God doesn’t demand hectic church programs and frenetic schedules; he only wants his people to know him more intimately, says D. A. Carson. The apostle Paul found that spiritual closeness in his own fellowship with the Father. A Call to Spiritual Reformation investigates the Epistles to see what lessons Paul taught in his “school of prayer.”

Christians today can still achieve the confidence Paul enjoyed by following his life-shaping principles and searching for a deeper devotional experience.

Buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

3. The Complete Works of E.M. Bounds on Prayer: Experience the Wonders of God Through Prayer

Learn Prayer from a Seasoned Pray-er

Bounds’ writing came out of experience and the depths of his own desire to ‘pray without ceasing.’ Here’s a short description from The Necessity of Prayer:

Bounds did not merely pray well that he might write well about prayer. He prayed because the needs of the world were upon him…He wrote transcendently about prayer, because he was himself, transcendent in its practice.

Buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

4. A Simple Way to Pray by Martin Luther

A Short Classic from Church History

R.C. Sproul comments on this short book: “No book has done more to revolutionize my personal prayer life than this little book by Martin Luther. I would recommend it for every Christian’s library.”

When asked by his barber and good friend, Peter Beskendorf, for some practical guidance on how to prepare oneself for prayer, Martin Luther responded by writing this brief treatise first published in 1535. A Simple Way to Pray is a fresh modern translation bringing us Luther’s practical instruction, using Luther’s I.T.C.P. method of prayer. This method anchors prayer in the catechism or other biblical texts, but allows the Holy Spirit to prompt thoughts via the Word, which may be chased more freely by the mind at prayer.

Free PDF or buy on Amazon.

Bonus: Free Audiobook Download of R.C. Sproul’s Children’s Book Based on Luther’s Work

5. The Hidden Life of Prayer by David MacIntyre

A favorite of Wayne Grudem and John Piper

Private or secret prayer is the life-blood of the Christian. The great men and women of God down through the ages have testified to the effectiveness of this in their lives. Some like Martin Luther, have said that they could not survive a busy day without spending 2-3 hours alone with God. Drawing on the experiences of people like Luther, Spurgeon, Muller, Whitefield and Wesley, the author presses the case for a greater commitment to prayer. His advice may not only transform your life, it could be a catalyst towards a change in the world around you.

Free PDF, Free Kindle Version, or Buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

6. A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World by Paul E.Miller

Author Paul Miller shares his insights and conclusions about how to connect the broken pieces of your life and allow prayer—even poorly delivered—to fill the gaps with meaning and substance.

Miller’s down-to-earth approach and practical nature will help you see that your relationship with God can grow and your communication with Him can get better.

Parents will find Miller’s family-life experiences especially helpful.

Buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

7. Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions compiled by Arthur Bennett

Timeless Prayers to Jump Start Your Prayer Life (and a personal favorite)

The strength of Puritan character and life lay in prayer and meditation. In this practice the spirit of prayer was regarded as of first importance and the best form of prayer, for living prayer is the characteristic of genuine spirituality. Yet prayer is also vocal and may therefore on occasions be written. Consequently in the Puritan tradition there are many written prayers and meditations which constitute an important corpus of inspiring devotional literature. Too often ex tempore prayer lacks variety, order and definiteness. The reason for this lies partly in a neglect of due preparation. It is here that the care and scriptural thoroughness which others found necessary in their approach to God may be of help. This book has been prepared not to ‘supply’ prayers but to prompt and encourage the Christian as he treads the path on which others have gone before.

Buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

8. Everyday Prayers: 365 Days to A Gospel-Centered Faith by Scotty Smith

Rich and Biblical Prayers for the 21st Century

How would life be different if we could think, see, and do all things in light of the person and work of Jesus? With this inspiring collection of 365 Scripture-centered prayers, Scotty Smith helps readers pray the Scriptures through the lens of the gospel, mining the resources of God’s grace and applying them in every season of life. He frees readers to abandon any posing or pretending in favor of an honest, no-spin relationship with a God who claims them as his own. Each day includes a Scripture reference and an inspirational original prayer, born from both moments of great faith and moments of crisis. Like a modern-day book of Psalms, Everyday Prayers is a year’s worth of growing in grace that readers will lean on year after year.

Buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

9. Face to Face: Praying the Scriptures for Spiritual Growth by Ken Boa

Praying God’s Words Back to Him

When you’re serious about following Christ, you long to become more like Him. You also know that the Bible contains the life-changing truths that will help you reach that goal. Face to Face: Praying the Scriptures for Spiritual Growth helps you turn your devotional times into a daily experience of transformation. Adapting and personalizing select Bible passages, Dr. Kenneth Boa offers you a refreshing and encouraging way to “renew your mind” as you meditate on and pray about: the attributes of God, the works of God, my relationship with God, the character I want to cultivate, my relationship with others. This inspiring approach will change both your life and the way you view the Scriptures.

Buy on Amazon.

10. A Call to Prayer by J.C. Ryle

A Short Booklet that Packs a Punch

J.C. Ryle was well known for his warm, plain-spoken candor, the kind which appeals to all souls regardless of rank or title, and this booklet is no different. Bold, encouraging, and affectionate, A Call to Prayer is just as the title says—an earnest invitation for all children of God to come before Him in prayer. Read it, be edified, and have hope: you have access to the Maker of heaven and earth who can do all things.

Buy on Amazon or WTS Books.

Your turn: what books on prayer would you recommend?

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Prayer can lighten crosses for us, however heavy. It can bring down to our side One who will help us to bear them.

Prayer can open a door for us when our way seems hedged up. It can bring down One who will say, “This is the way, walk in it.”

Prayer can let in a ray of hope when all our earthly prospects seem darkened. It can bring down One who will say, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”

Prayer can obtain relief for us when those we love most are taken away, and the world feels empty. It can bring down One who can fill the gap in our hearts with himself, and say to the waves within, “Peace; be still.”

Oh that men were not so like Hagar in the wilderness, blind to the well of living waters close beside them. I want you to be happy. I know I cannot ask you a more useful question than this: Do you pray?

J.C. Ryle in A Call to Prayer (free PDF)