“At some point, most of us stop living out of imagination and start living out of memory. But there is nothing God loves more than keeping promises, answering prayers, performing miracles, and fulfilling dreams. 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.” ~ Mark Batterson, author of The Circle Maker: Praying Circles Around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears.
Over Christmas a friend recommended The Circle Maker to my wife. I, in turn, borrowed my wife’s copy, read the first few pages, and purchased a Kindle copy. (As a fellow Zondervan / HarperCollins author I like supporting the home team.) The real blessings in the book are the profound nuggets of wisdom Batterson offers readers. Here are a few I highlighted.
The greatest moments in life are the miraculous moments when human impotence and divine omnipotence intersect.
Who you become is determined by how you pray. Ultimately, the transcript of your prayers becomes the script of your life.
Miracles are the by-product of prayers that were prayed by you or for you.
We pray out of our ignorance, but God answers out of His omniscience .
Stop praying for it and start praising God for it. True faith celebrates before the miracle happens.
Praise is a higher dimension of faith.
When imagination is sacrificed on the altar of logic, God is robbed of the glory that rightfully belongs to Him.
Faith is the willingness to look foolish.
Work like it depends on us and pray like it depends on God.
To me, a book sold is not a book sold; it’s a prayer answered.
Have vision beyond your resources.
Faith is allowing your God-given vision to determine your budget.
If the vision is from God, it will most definitely be beyond your means.
The Almighty is moved by big dreams and bold prayers.
I admit, I’m a sucker for hope-filled, inspirational books, so of course I find encouragement in Batterson simple instructions to pray circles around your fears, problems, and dreams.
Most days I walk our yard, praying aloud to God. I specifically mention those areas where I need help and say thanks when I see His hand working on my behalf. So I am familiar with circle-prayer-walking. But I also forget most of what I say and pray. That’s why I also keep a prayer journal.
Now I am also adding a prayer-circle sheet to my daily devotional time.
As the head of a publishing company I have lots of books I could pray over. If I prayed over each one daily, that is all I would have time to do. But I’m also an author who is constantly asking God to bless my own writing, too.
This year I began my prayer-circle journey with a blank sheet of paper. In the center I placed my prayer and circled it. I write my payers in blue ink and God’s promises in red. I also have lousy penmanship, but I trust God can read my hand writing, even if others cannot. Each time I find a promise in Scripture or a praise passage, I add it to my sheet. In this way I “surround” my dream with God’s promises.
Will it make a difference? Will God honor His promises and bless my writing? That’s up to Him. But I can already tell a difference in my attitude. I now expect Dead Low Tide, Skull Creek Stakeout, and Dead Man’s Hand to sell out their first print run. My prayer goal is 8000 copies sold of each. That may not seem like a huge number but Batterson reminds us that 95 percent of books don’t sell five thousand copies.
I am asking God to move the Caden Chronicles series into that 5 percent.
If you believe God has called you into a work, ask for His blessing and circle your prayer with praise and His promises. And please, please, please … if God answers your prayer, let me know! I would love to see how He is working in your life.