Prayer is one of the themes that keeps coming up in Jack Miller’s book The Heart of a Servant Leader. The weapons of spiritual warfare, he writes, are humility and prayer.
Make the whole ministry center on private and corporate prayer. Do not expect bigger victories in tough areas until corporate praying becomes the complete center of the ministry. The reason? It is in prayer together that we find grace to give up control to the Father, rely exclusively on the Spirit, and see the demons subdued. It is here we get our life, vigor, zest, and authority for the battle…Without constant adoration, thanksgiving, intercession, and confession together, we are going to teach people to rely on our traditions, plans, technologies, and methods rather than on grace. Such converts will simply be switching their idols from the witchcraft stuff to the tools of modernism.
Typical Miller: You could spend months unpacking, and living, this single paragraph.
I saw an example of this a couple of weeks ago. I asked someone a question, which I’ll admit was a bit of a tough one to answer, one that required a fair bit of spiritual insight. The person I asked turned slightly away from me and seemed lost in thought. For a minute I thought I confused him, so I rephrased the question. He told me that he was just taking a moment to ask his Father for direction. That’s stuck with me for the past couple of weeks. It’s brought Paul’s instruction, “Pray without ceasing,” to life for me.
I have a long way to go in my life in this area of switching away from what Miller calls the idolatry of what I can do, turning instead to exclusive reliance on God and to grace.
P.S. I think I mentioned that Miller reminds me of Tim Keller. Keller says, “I knew Jack pretty well.” Seems like Miller was Keller’s pastor for a while. Keller has other influences of course: Lloyd-Jones, Stott, the puritans, etc. Both Miller and Keller are worth listening to.