Prayer: Communing with God in Everything--Collected Insights from A.W. Tozer  -     By: A.W. Tozer
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Prayer: Communing with God in Everything--Collected Insights from A.W. Tozer

Moody Publishers / 2016 / Paperback

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Product Description

Tozer was that rare bird, an evangelical who was also something of a mystic with a literary flair. Seaver has pulled together the finest insights from Tozer's voluminous writings, including "Some churches now advertise courses on how to pray. How ridiculous! That is like giving a course in how to fall in love." 224 pages, softcover. Moody.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 224
Vendor: Moody Publishers
Publication Date: 2016
Dimensions: 8.00 X 5.25 (inches)
ISBN: 0802413811
ISBN-13: 9780802413819

Publisher's Description

"Some churches now advertise courses on how to pray. How ridiculous! That is like giving a course on how to fall in love." —A. W. Tozer

Tozer understood prayer as few do: as a way of life. Now readers can share that same grand vision.

Prayer combines the best of Tozer on prayer into one volume. Tozer was captured by the great wonder of God, and he regarded prayer as the primary means of coming into His presence. But if our everyday life is filled with the barrenness of busyness and there is no serious urgency to pray, we forfeit the wonder of being conformed to the image of Christ and knowing our God more intimately—the true Christian life.

Prayer is doable. God is accessible. And Tozer provides the wisdom and encouragement to help us encounter Him daily. With commentary and reflection questions provided by compiler W.L. Seaver, Prayer takes our understanding of prayer to new depths and helps us have a life that prays.

Author Bio

A.W. TOZER began his lifelong pursuit of God at the age of seventeen after hearing a street preacher in Akron, Ohio. A self-taught theologian, Tozer was a pastor, writer and editor whose powerful use of words continues to grip the intellect and stir the soul of today's reader. Among his best-loved books are the classics The Pursuit of God and The Attributes of God.

DR. W. L. SEAVER is an associate professor of statistics at the University of Tennessee. He holds a Ph.D. in Statistics, a Master of Business Administration and a Master of Arts in Biblical Studies. He is not only an author of more than thirty articles and four books but also a researcher and consultant whose expertise is in finding patters in data and the Scriptures over time. He has developed discipleship ministries with athletes, students, faculty, and the local church. He and his wife, Barbara, have three grown children

Editorial Reviews

"I will pick up almost any book that can teach me something about prayer. This book challenged my thoughts and beliefs about prayer in so many ways, I may have to reread it in order to get the full impact of what the authors have shared.

W L Seaver has collected and compiled A W Tozer's writings on prayer and added his own thoughts to each chapter. Each chapter is a challenge in and of itself, one of the most important concepts is that we have to INTIMATELY know God for our prayers to have real conversation value. Our prayers also must be preceded and followed by complete obedience. One of the most significant changes to my prayer beliefs is that God has three answers to our prayers--yes, no, wait (or "I have something better"). That takes prayer down to a trite grocery list where we lay out our desires and then walk away from our prayer thinking we have connected with God. Nothing is further from the truth. For example (and this happened to me a couple of weeks ago), we go to church, see people we know, ask how they are doing, and walk away before getting an answer. We feel we have made a connection when we barely acknowledged the others. Too often our prayer lives are like this. And a conversation MUST include talking and listening. We HAVE to listen to God to be able to say that we have prayed.

Seaver pointed this out with a quote that is older than Tozer--

Tell God all that is in your heart, as one unloads one’s heart, its pleasures and its pains, to a dear friend. Tell Him your troubles, that He may comfort you; tell Him your joys, that He may sober them; tell Him your longings, the He may purify them; tell Him your dislikes, that He may help you conquer them, talk to Him of your temptations, that He may shield you from them; lay bare your indifference to good, your depraved tastes for evil, you instability. Tell Him how self-love makes you unjust to others, how vanity tempts you to be insincere, how pride disguises you to yourself and others.

If you pour out all you weaknesses, needs, and troubles there will be no lack of what to say. You will never exhaust the subject. It is continually being renewed. People who have no secrets from each other never want for subjects of conversation. They do not weigh their words, for there is nothing to be held back; neither do they seek for something to say. They talk out of the abundance of the heart, without consideration they say what they think. Blessed are they who attain to such familiar, unreserved, conversation with God.

Francois Fenelon

This is a five star book that I cannot recommend highly enough. It can change your life.

My thanks to Moody Publishers for allowing me to read and review this book."

Reviewed by Becky Guinn on NetGalley, Feb 12, 2016

 


"I was super-excited to get a chance to review A.W. Tozer's 'new' book on prayer. (Can I just say I'm so thankful that new Tozer books continue to be released. Tozer may have died fifty years ago, but he's still ever-relevant, in my opinion.) This book gathers together Tozer's thoughts on prayer. Chapters come from his sermons, articles, or books. The first section--containing twenty-two chapters--is called 'Tozer's Writings,' and the second section--containing six chapters--is called 'Tozer's Sermons.' The first section, if I recall correctly, the readings are perhaps a bit shorter, but, contain bonus material. Summaries are provided for what you've just read in that chapter, and Tozer's ideas are discussed and explored further. These chapters also include discussion questions. The second section, the readings are definitely longer. These chapters all come from sermons, not books published before or after his death.

Chapters include:

The Whole Life Must Pray The Sacrament of Living, part one and two To Be Right, We Must Think Right Prayer: No Substitute for Obedience The Importance of Prayer in God's Eternal Work Born after Midnight Praying Without Condition The Power of Silence Dangers in Unanswered Prayer What Profit In Prayer?

Three Ways To Get What We Want Prayer Changes People and Things On Wrestling in Prayer Praying Till We Pray God's Selfhood and Prayer Truth has Two Wings Honesty in Prayer Measuring Spirituality by Public Prayers The Best Things Come Hard A Word to the Men about the Women Does God Always Answer Prayer?

Prepare by Prayer, part one and two Believing Prayer In Everything by Prayer, part one, two, and three

I would recommend this book for several reasons. One, I love A.W. Tozer. I do. I love him for his zeal, his passion, his stubborn clinging to the Bible as the undeniable WORD OF GOD. To read Tozer is to meet a man who loved God with mighty zeal. Tozer didn't seem to care about being popular or being well-liked. He cared about speaking the truth--as he saw it--and for Tozer, the source of truth was without a doubt, the Bible. Tozer was upset by things he saw: in the church, in society--and he spoke out about it. He clung to hope, however, that men and women could and would be transformed by the power of God, that godliness and holiness was always possible because our God is a big God, and his promises are true. Two, in addition to having a special appreciation for Tozer, I enjoy reading books on prayer. I think prayer remains a tricky subject being both simple and complex. I think believers will always need another book on prayer. And this one is worth reading. It has plenty of thought-provoking ideas in it. You may love or hate Tozer, but, you can't deny he makes you THINK."

Reviewed by Becky Laney on NetGalley, Jan 22, 2016

Product Reviews

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  1. West Union, OH
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Powerful!
    October 27, 2016
    Jimmy Reagan
    West Union, OH
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    We all know that A.W. Tozer is a powerful, provoking, and spiritual writer par excellence. Since he died in 1963, we arent getting any new titles, yet W. L. Seaver has complied Tozers thoughts on prayer from across all his writings and given them too us here. While it cant compare to his original writings, this volume accomplishes something worthwhile, and , frankly, more powerful than I anticipated.

    Youll be hooked in chapter one when he blows up our emergency-only praying. Praying is meant to be a whole-life experience as he well explains. If we would expand our prayer life to every area including the most mundane then we would not have these big blocks of our lives totally out of touch with our Lord.

    Especially moving were chapters on praying without condition, on wrestling in prayer (he removes much confusion here), and truth has two wings. While those were my favorites, or most personally challenging to me, there isnt a dud in the book.

    Seaver gives a small review after each of Tozers writings that is well done. If you want to use it with a study guide as well, the section reflect and apply is there for you. Some of the later chapters even come from previously unpublished sermons.

    You wouldnt have thought a compilation volume could pull off being a major work on prayer, but I think it can worthily take its place on your shelves by the great classic volumes. Its really that good!

    I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255.
  2. Orlando, FL
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    Nice Compliation
    October 6, 2016
    Kris Bush
    Orlando, FL
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    I got this book from Moody Publishers to review and I was a wee bit skeptical because it is a compilation and not a direct continuous writing on prayer by A.W. Tozer. However I must say it is actually a pretty decent compilation of his sermons on prayer and the need and importance of prayer.

    When you're reading Tozer's words, you know it. It pierces to the heart and the compiler does not take away from that. Even he says he was trembling when approaching this body of work.

    I do recommend to anyone trying to learn more on the topic of prayer and go deeper in their prayers and how they pray.
  3. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    Great Little Book on Prayer
    September 22, 2016
    A.S. Lester
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I am a big fan of A.W. Tozer. He is passionate, practical, and communicates with Holy prayer-by-tozerSpirit conviction. The fact that his words continue to be complied and offered in print form attests to his faithfulness and fruitfulness as a minister of the gospel. In this new book, Prayer: Communing With God In Everything, W.L. Seaver has pulled together various insights from Tozer on the subject of prayer, included his own additional comments, and provided reflection and application aids to help the reader both understand the nature of prayer and move towards cultivating a deeper intimacy with the Lord in prayer.

    As previously mentioned, the book is not a how-to manual on prayer, nor is it an in-depth consideration of the Lords Prayer, or any other prayer recorded in Scripture for that matter. Instead Seaver has examined the countless volumes of Tozers works and complied numerous excerpts that touch on the nature of prayer. As a result, the reader is left with a multifaceted perspective on what it means to stay in daily communion with the Father.

    The book has two main divisions, Tozer Writings and Tozer Sermons, which make up twenty-eight chapters. Dont let the twenty-eight chapters intimidate you, however, as the total page count of the book is only around 215 (so the chapters are short and manageable enough, even for those with busy schedules). Tozer Writings are short selections from an assortment of his various books, while Tozer Sermons include thoughts related to prayer from some of his sermons. All chapters conclude with a Reflect and Apply section to help the reader think through and internalize the content.

    Strengths

    The book is typical Tozer, which is a good thing. He writes with a piercing and penetrating insight into the human heart. One of my favorite quotes from the book reads, Prayer at its best is the expression of the total life (17). Seaver notes the statement is both simple and complex (19). For the believer who is in right relationship with God, prayer is nothing more than the natural outflow of all things. It is as simple as communing about life with the Father. To try and teach someone how to do this, as Tozer notes, is about as absurd as trying to explain someone how to fall in love (back cover). Yet the practice of prayer can be extremely complex and frustrating, especially for the believer who is not walking closely with the Lord. For him prayer can feel more like a taxing duty or discipline, rather than the delight of the soul in communion with the Father.

    Another much needed insight that Tozer shares has to do with our tendency to compartmentalize our lives. One of the greatest hindrances to internal peace the Christian encounters is the common habit of dividing our lives into two areasthe sacred and the secular (23). Such a faulty perspective leads us into thinking that some acts glorify God more than others. For example, we assume God is more pleased when we are at church than at work, or God receives more glory when we are teaching others a Bible lesson rather than talking to our neighbor down the street.

    The reality is much different, as everything can be done in a way that would glorify God. Tozer develops this thought: we need to realize and practice every day that there is no non-sacred act. For instance, mowing the yard, washing the dishes, cleaning a garage, getting some exercise, organizing a shelf, writing a report, and hundreds more such secular acts should not rob us of intimate fellowship and prayer with God but should enrich it (28). We dont always think of our ordinary life in this way, yet communing with God in the normal routines of everyday life is precisely what the nature of prayer is all about:

    It is not what a man does that determines whether his work is sacred or secular, it is why he does it. The motive is everything. Let a man sanctify the Lord God in his heart and he can thereafter do no common act. All he does is good and acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For such a man, living itself will be a priestly ministration (35).

    Weaknesses

    Perhaps the most glaring weakness of the book relates not to the content that was included, but to that which is surprisingly lacking. There is no consideration of the Lords Prayer, or His High Priestly Prayer, or any of the other great prayers recorded in Scripture. It is hard to imagine a book on prayer that does not include any of the classical examples of prayer. Yet, for better or worse, that is exactly what Seaver has compiled here. Given he chose to only draw from Tozers writings, however, it is understandable that he was limited in what works he could include.

    Because the structure of the book is not focused on any particular passage or example, it can lend itself to being misunderstood and taken out of context. A good example of this can be found in chapter 12, Three Ways to Get What We Want. I would assume Tozer is speaking about things that are not contrary to Gods revealed will for the believer. Unfortunately that distinction isnt made in the chapter itself, which leaves the content open for erroneous application. I should point out that Seaver does clarify the larger context of what Tozer was saying (96), but one cant help wonder that such clarifications would not be necessary if the structure of the book was different.

    Still, it should be noted that the book delivers on its claim to be a collection of Tozers thoughts on prayer. If you enjoy Tozer and desire to have a deeper understanding on the nature of prayer, youre going to love this book!

    Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
  4. New Hampshire
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: Female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Prayer: Communing With God in Everything compiled by W. L. Seaver
    August 30, 2016
    Faith Warrior
    New Hampshire
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: Female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through Moody Publishers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with theFederal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 : Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

    Prayer consists of a compilation of works and sermons done and written by A. W. Tozer. The focus and direction point towards a deeper understanding of what prayer was intended to be, according to the Bible, from which we receive all of our daily instruction for our lives. There are many ways that are mentioned in which we can pray. Not only can prayer be lifted up by words, but it also can be carried out as worship to God in daily activities. Prayer brings questions and insight to the surface as the reader progresses along through its text.

    There are two types of prayers I discovered through my reading; private prayers and thought prayers. A lot of things were brought to light after I had read this compilation titled Prayer. There are a lot of things to be done in order to receive answered prayer. A few of these consist of obedience, humbleness, and surrender. There were a couple of questions which came to mind during my reading process; Have I been limiting God in my prayer requests? Do I place conditions on my prayers?.

    There is one part, out of many, which I took away from Prayers pages; declared all meats clean, every day holy, all places sacred, and every act acceptable to God. (Seaver,2016, p. 33)

    I recommend Prayer to all readers!

    Seaver, W. L. 2016.Prayer: Communing with God in everythingcollected insights from A. W. Tozer.Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers
  5. Warren, Maine
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    A.W. Tozer: Thoughts on Prayer
    April 8, 2016
    Michele Morin
    Warren, Maine
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5




    There are so many books and authors out there that I know are amazing, and that Im really missing something by never having made them a priority. Tozer is my undiscovered author, and its not as if I havent delighted in brief quotations of his words a mix of the understated and the profound. It is even true that portions of his sermons read online have jolted me awake to Gods holiness and drawn me closer to the rosy glow of truth.

    Now, thanks to W.L. Seaver, Ive spent some focused time with Tozers writing, for he has compiled Tozers insights on prayer from sixteen of his books and several sermons. Prayer: Communing with God in Everything is a skillfully curated scrapbook that captures Tozers knack for portraying the majesty of God in all things. While prayer is portrayed in all its efficacy and mystery, it is still abundantly clear to the reader that God will never be other than Himself, no matter how many people pray, nor how long, nor how earnestly.

    Having said that, Tozer urges believers to:

    pray past the ordinary into the unusual;

    enter the prayer chamber filled with faith and armed with courage;

    bring his will into line with the will of God so God can do what he has all along been willing to do.

    Three features of these collected insights are most helpful:

    1. Mr. Seaver has organized the material so that excerpts concerning the correction of common misconceptions about prayer are grouped together, as are motivational excerpts for making the most of ones prayer life. Each chapter has been labeled with its source and date of publication for ease of future study.

    2.For readers who are new to reading theology, W.L. Seavers commentary following each chapter will be a confidence builder, answering the question: Did I get the point here? For the teacher who needs resources to fuel a class on prayer, the work of compiling material, writing questions for reflection, and making application with specific Scripture passages has already been done.

    3.Tozers sermon transcripts reveal his pastoral heart and his deep conviction of the enduring truth of Gods Word. Step-by-step and story-by-story, principles and examples from Scripture become recommendations from an older and wiser friend who is in awe of God, who has seen with his own eyes that God will make iron swim, and who challenges his listeners to join him on their knees.

    //

    This book was provided by Moody Publishers in exchange for my review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 : Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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