by Eric Ludy

 

Christians struggle to know God because they live prayerless lives. They fail in representing His heart to the nations because they have failed in this critical area of relationship. Prayer defines our experience with God. If we don’t pray, we can’t claim to know the heart of the Father.

Eric & Leslie Ludy’s book Wrestling Prayer was recommended to me by one of the collegians in our church. It’s been a significant addition to my understanding of prayer, and it’s also going to be a continuing shaper of my prayer life as I continue to meditate on some of the thoughts that are shared in it.

A few words to describe the book: Inspirational. Deeply challenging.

It will indeed help you “recalibrate your version of Christianity to the Almighty’s standard.” (Ludy)

I really do look forward to an enriched prayer life due to it’s encouragement. I readily recommend it to anyone looking for a powerful provocation for prayer.

A few notes. It’s definitely an imaginative book. It uses passionate imagery and language to make its case. If you’re looking for a good study on prayer, this is not it. Its theology is a little stunted since it relies so heavily on moving imagery, challenge, great quotes, experience and anecdotes.

It takes great liberties with scripture – using mainly allegory rather than sound interpretation to make its points. I don’t contest many of their conclusions, but I detest how people want to make a sound point but then twist scriptural analogy to do so. They could have made equally sound points without sticking to the story of David and his Mighty Men.

Any analogy, when forced, breaks down. In their effort to glorify David’s mighty men and compare them to the disciples of Jesus in this book-long analogy, they neglect to observe that the mighty men may not have actually been godly men. They were loyal to David, but they may not have been loyal to God.

In fact, Joab, who is David’s right hand man (and held up as a continuing example in Wrestling Prayer, expressly defies David’s orders on at least three different instances, committing murder. His offense is so eggregious that one of David’s last wishes was for his son Solomon to kill him, “Deal with him according to your wisdom, but do not let his gray head go down to the grave in peace.” (1 Kings 2:6)

I still recommend the book, but read it with discernment. Don’t miss the powerful and compelling arguments that are presented. If received with humility, they will be useful for a prayer transformation in your life.