Through the centuries many have found prayer to be a helpful and important part of their daily routine. Despite the known benefits, others find it difficult to pray, especially as they are just beginning to build the habit. These books have helped me to grow in my prayer life, and I recommend them to you.
“A Hunger for God: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer” by John Piper. If you have read “Desiring God” by John Piper, there is almost no need to read another book by him, because each book offers a slightly different perspective of the concept of Christian Hedonism. Christian Hedonism is the idea that in pursuing intimacy with God, we find our greatest joy. “A Hunger for God”, however, is very much worth the time. It places the concept of desiring God above all else in the context of prayer. It also describes how fasting heightens one’s pleasure and joy in God.
“A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World” by Paul E. Miller is also one of my favorites. This book is intensely practical and provides suggestions as to how a person might pray more habitually and more deeply. The book has 292 reader reviews on Amazon and 244 of them rate the book five stars. Miller tells how the struggles of being the parent of a child with autism drove him to a deeper prayer life. It helped me to see how my own challenges in being a father could drive me to a deeper prayer life as well.
“Praying Backwards: Transforming Your Prayer Life by Beginning in Jesus’ Name” by Bryan Chapell is a more recent favorite of mine. Many Christians have the habit of tacking the phrase “in Jesus’ name” on the end of their prayers without really thinking of the implications of the phrase. Chapell explains those implications and how they should shape to whole of our praying. When we pray in Jesus’ name, the focus is on what glorifies Him and what grows His kingdom. Though I already knew the concept, the book helped me to increase my understanding of it. I am now better able to explain it and teach it to others.
E.M. Bounds’ books on prayer are excellent for inspiring someone who has grown dormant in their prayer life. Brother Lawrence’s “The Practice of the Presence of God the Best Rule of a Holy Life” describes how one monk began to grow in his sense of God’s presence through the practice of praying continuously. It is a classic that has inspired many believers through the years. Despite the passing of time and the separation between our postmodern age and the eras of Bounds and Brother Lawrence, their works remain helpful books for those who want to grow in their prayer life.
I also suggest an Internet search of the best books on prayer. You will likely find many other helpful suggestions.