By God’s grace, The Power of Prayer Handbook is now available. This book has been a long-term project. The first inspiration for it was given by Dr Paul Negrut on one of Peter Hammond’s first mission trips behind the Iron Curtain into Eastern Europe.
Paul explained how the persecuted church was able to recognise true Believers, and identify informers planted by the communist government: “A real Christian loves God, a real Christian loves to read the Bible. A real Christian loves to pray. A real Christian hates sin.” Then he added: “We don’t count our members by how many attend the Sunday service, but by who attends the Bible study and prayer meeting.”
Over the last 30 years of ministering to the persecuted churches, Dr. Peter Hammond has had the privilege of participating in some vibrant and dynamic prayer meetings in Mozambique and Angola, Romania and Sudan, in Nigeria and the Congo, in North Ireland and in Zimbabwe. However he had been disturbed to see the low priority placed on prayer in most of the Western churches. While prayer meetings in persecuted churches were packed to over flowing, intense and wholehearted, the same could not be said about most of the mega churches in peace and prosperity.
During Peter’s mission to Europe in 2005 when he had the opportunity to visit many of the great Reformation centres: Wittenberg, Zürich and Geneva, he was struck by the emphasis each of the Reformers placed on the central importance of prayer. Thomas Cranmer produced the Book of Common Prayer to help reform the worship in the Church of England. Along with The 39 Articles to reform doctrine, and the Book of Homilies to reform the preaching and teaching, Thomas Cranmer compiled the Book of Common Prayer to reform the worship of the Church.
As Peter witnessed the powerful prayer meetings in Northern Ireland, he was convinced that we need to bring back the prayer meeting as a integral part of our weekly church programmes, rediscover the power of prayer, and seek the fire of God.
“Revivals are born in the atmosphere of true prayer. Desperate prayer. No Christian will ever grow spiritually if this part of his life is neglected…prayer is not a monologue, it’s a two-way conversation. We speak to God and we need Him to speak to us. The example of the Pharisee and the publican praying in the temple was used as an example of false and true prayer. The Pharisee prayed with himself (Luke 18:11), God didn’t even come into the picture. Since his own life was not right with God it revolved around himself and brought no response from Heaven. The publican or tax collector on the other hand prayed from his heart in such a way that God immediately responded and Jesus could say ‘He went away justified’. May this book by Dr. Peter Hammond serve to inspire many to pray in such a way that the power of God would be revealed.” From the Foreword by Rev. Erlo Stegen, KwaSizabantu Mission
“The Power of Prayer Handbook” makes truly inspiring reading. It shows us the prayers of mighty men of faith, and calls us to more ardent and effective prayer. The author asks: “Are you on fire for Christ? …. Lukewarm Christians make the Lord sick. We need to repent of half-hearted, worldly, superficial… easy believism. We need doctrinal steel in our backbones and Holy Fire in our bellies. ‘Is not My Word like a fire?’ says the Lord, ‘and a hammer that breaks the rocks in pieces?’” (Jeremiah 23:29) What can we say to that, except: Thank you Lord, for reminding us! The book is well illustrated with pictures of the Reformers and written in a simple, warm, and direct way which speaks to the heart. It will make a great difference in our personal, Church, and national prayer life." Dorothea Scarborough, Chairman of the Christian Action Network
It is our heartfelt prayer that readers will experience the power of dynamic Bible-based prayer through this practical handbook. Those who want to revive their prayer life, restore their church prayer meetings, and see the course of history change by prayer, will want to obtain this handbook which includes chapters on prayer and the sovereignty of God, praying for the persecuted, praying for justice, the imprecatory Psalms, how to revive our devotional lives, and guidelines for extended prayer focus, national repentance and Revival.