I am an avid reader. As a matter of fact, I'm in the middle of three different books right now. I believe that good spiritual reading can bring you closer to Christ, so I always try to have a spiritual book with me. When I found out that an acquaintance of mine wrote a book I picked it up. Jim Beckman, whether he realizes it or not, has played a pretty significant role in my spiritual development. I first met Jim last summer at a conference at Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. I was there to get my youth ministry certification, and Jim was the coordinator of the program. Jim recently published a book titled "God Help Me: How to Grow in Prayer." Of course, when I found out he wrote a book, I had to read it!
I have given a lot of time and thought on the importance of prayer. I understand that there is a need to sacrifice ourselves in prayer and force ourselves to do it even in the midst of feeling spiritually desolate. Beckman addresses this issue that we all face in our prayer and encourages his readers to be consistent in prayer despite how we feel. He speaks of two main components to a good prayer, honesty and consistency. It is extremely important to remain consistent in your prayer life, especially when it is dry. I have had a very difficult time in my life with remaining consistent in my prayer. In those times that I have remained consistent, I have felt closer to Christ and in a deeper relationship with Him. No relationship will be a good one without some consistency in it. The same holds true in your relationship with Christ.
Likewise, no relationship will be a good one without honesty. You need to be honest with God in your prayers. This one is a bit more difficult for me to figure out, because to be truly honest I need to be able to reach the depths of my inner being and truly see myself on an intimate level. This has been very difficult for me to do. Just ask my wife. She knows me better than I do. You may ask why it's important to be honest with God. He does know everything about us, why do we need to tell it to Him? It's not for Him, but for us. God wants us to know ourselves as he knows us and being truly honest with yourself in your relationship with Him will help us to see ourselves.
This is a fantastic book and one that I will re-read over and over again. Beckman really challenges his readers to deeper prayer and gives some practical tools to do so. This book is recommended to anyone who wants to grow deeper in prayer.