March : Does Prayer Change Things by R.C. Sproul
Looking to read a good book? We got what you need right here. Classics, fiction, and all things that will help you to edify your spirit and renew you mind.
Every month, Berean Home Fellowship will suggest and feature a Book of the Month. In the month of March, we are featuring R.C. Sproul’s book Does Prayer Change Things?
Does prayer make any difference? Does it really change anything? Yes, says Dr. R.C. Sproul in this Crucial Questions booklet. Though we cannot hope that our prayers will change God’s mind, prevailing upon Him to act against His will, we can be sure that prayer does change things—including our own hearts. Plus, it is one of the chief means by which God carries out His will in the world.
For these reasons, Dr. Sproul argues, prayer has a vital place in the life of the Christian. In short chapters packed with practical wisdom, he unveils the purpose, the pattern, the practice, the prohibitions, and the power of prayer, calling Christians to come before God’s presence with joy and hope.
The Importance of Reading
We realize that a huge part of the reason that the church is in such a bind is that it doesn’t read. This has had a detrimental effect on the church. Look at these facts about illiteracy:
- The average reading level of a United States citizen is 7th to 8th grade.
- About 32 million adults in the United states can’t read. That’s about 14% of the population.
- Nearly 85% of the juveniles who face trial in the juvenile court system are functionally illiterate, proving that there is a close relationship between illiteracy and crime. More than 60% of all inmates are functionally illiterate.
- Reports show that the rate of low literacy in the United States directly costs the healthcare industry over $70 million every year.
That’s just a little bit of the bad news.
Now, maybe you have been told by someone to read but the question you may have asked silently is, “Why?” Here are just a few benefits from reading:
- Reading can slow the progress of (or possibly even prevent) Alzheimer’s and Dementia, since keeping your brain in an active state prevents it from losing its potency. The brain, like a muscle, needs to be stimulated regularly to be healthy. It literally keeps your brain young. According to a study from Rush University Medical Center, adults who spent their downtime doing creative or intellectual activities (like reading) had a 32 percent slower rate of cognitive decline later in life than those who did not. The moral of the story: don’t just work out the body, work out the mind.
- It’s a stress reliever, especially good fiction. But even good fiction can be beneficial to your life in teaching life lessons and instilling hope if the story is good and meaningful.
- Reading can make you smarter. It’s simply a natural byproduct of the act, especially if you’re reading material that contains facts and truth. This is a scientific fact.
- Reading improves your memory. When you read a book, you have to remember an kinds of things: characters, backgrounds, facts, quotes, history, and other assorted details, as well as various arcs and sub-plots that weave their way through every story. When we work our brains, they tend to remember these things with relative ease. A detail that is simply awesome is that every new memory you create forges new synapses (brain pathways) and strengthens existing ones. This helps short-term memory recall as well as mood stabilization.
- Reading makes you a better writer. It’s a known fact that almost all writers to a fault are readers. They read regularly. They are sponges for information and they routinely like to fill themselves with stories and facts. So, if you want to be a better writer, read.
- Reading expands your vocabulary. One reason that contributes to the use all kinds of profanity—besides the obvious and primary one of sin—is that people have a limited vocabulary to express themselves. Reading helps to expand that though it won’t necessarily stop you from using foul language. That’s a heart issue.
There are others but just from this list, you can see how reading will help you when it comes to the Word of God and all things related. This is how God has wired us and it’s also how He has decide to communicate with us. It would do us well on more than one level to read more.