The Circle Maker

The Circle Maker - Mark Batterson After hearing a lot of talk about the latest book from Mark Batterson we decided to go through The Circle Maker together with our life group from Central. I had the chance to meet Mark when he spoke at a conference at Central a few years back and I’m excited that he’ll be returning for our prayer conference again next year. As becomes readily apparent in this book, Mark’s journey with God and his ministry career can be unpacked through moments of prayer. He certainly practices what he preaches. Prayer isn’t an area where I feel as disciplined as I want to be so there was much to chew on for me and much to encourage me. If this has also been an area of struggle for you than I’d highly recommend this book. Here are some of my favorite quotes from it:
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. If your prayers aren’t impossible to you, they are insulting to God. Why? Because they don’t require divine intervention. But ask God to part the Red Sea or make the sun stand still or float an iron axhead, and God is moved to omnipotent action. Prayers are prophecies. They are the best predictors of your spiritual future. Who you become is determined by how you pray. God has determined that certain expressions of His power will only be exercised in response to prayer. Simply put, God won’t do it unless you pray for it. Potential is God’s gift to us; what we do with it is our gift back to God. You cannot build God’s reputation if you aren’t willing to risk yours. 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. The only thing I can predict with absolute certainty is this: the more you pray the more holy surprises will happen. All of us love miracles. We just don’t like being in a situation that necessitates one. We live in a culture that overvalues fifteen minutes of fame and undervalues lifelong faithfulness. Drawing prayer circles isn’t about proving yourself to God; it’s about giving God an opportunity to prove Himself to you.
One of the ideas that really stuck with me is praying for the favor of God. As he puts it: “If you asked me what I pray for more than anything else, the answer is the favor of God. While it’s tough to describe or define, I think the favor of God is what God does for you that you cannot do for yourself.” While I hadn’t necessarily thought of it in those terms before, I totally agree. I long for this badly. I don’t want a life filled with only things that I can make happen. I want my life to be defined by God’s hand upon all that I’m doing. I’ve already begun praying for this regularly and seeking opportunities to align myself with God’s favor.

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Jeremy Jernigan

Speaker | Author | Founder of Communion Wine Co.