As soon as I heard about The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson, just before it was published recently, I knew it was a book that I wanted to read as soon as possible. I’m only about halfway through it, but I wanted to start blogging about it, because I know it’s going to take more than one post.
The book begins by telling the legend of Honi, the circle maker, who lived a generation or so before Jesus. You can read it in a sample excerpt here.
It’s a great book on prayer. Here are some thoughts from the first half of the book …
Bold prayers honor God, and God honors bold prayers. God isn’t offended by your biggest dreams or boldest prayers. He is offended by anything less. (9)
Drawing prayer circles starts with identifying your Jericho. You’ve got to define the promises God wants you to stake claim to, the miracles God wants you to believe for, and the dreams God wants you to pursue. Then you need to keep circling until God gives you what he wants and he wills. (17)
There’s a good chapter on “praying through.” It’s chapter four, and it’s included in the sample excerpt.
Circle makers are history makers. In the grand scheme of God’s story, there is a footnote behind every headline. The footnote is prayer. And if you focus on the footnotes, God will write the headlines. It’s your prayers that change the eternal plotline. (26)
Our generation desperately needs to rediscover the difference between praying for and praying through. … Circle makers know that it’s always too soon to quit praying because you never know when the wall is about to fall. You are always only one prayer away from a miracle. (26)
I like this description of faith …
Faith is the willingness to look foolish. (35)
If we were absolutely honest, we would have to admit that most of our prayers have as their main objective personal comfort rather than God’s glory. … If you seek answers you won’t find them, but if you seek God, the answers will find you. (50)
Never underestimate the power of a single prayer. God can do anything through anyone who circles their big dreams with bold prayers. With God, there is no precedent, because all things are possible. (55)
The size of prayers depends on the size of our God. And if God knows no limits, then neither should our prayers. (58)
I’ll wrap up this list of quotes from the first half of the book with a couple more encouraging reminders …
The reason many of us give up too soon is that we feel like we have failed if God doesn’t answer our prayer. That isn’t failure. The only way you can fail is if you stop praying. Prayer is a no-lose proposition. (71)
God is always stage right. He’s ready to make his grand entrance. All he is waiting for is your prayer cue. (90)
What do you need to circle in prayer?