Glenn Beck described Pastor Mark Batterson, author of "The Circle Maker: Praying Circles Around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears," as a "life-changing" individual who he has waited longer to have on his program than almost any other guest he's ever had.
"I haven't been this excited to meet somebody in a long time," Beck told the pastor at the beginning of his television show Wednesday. "You are life-changing."
Batterson, the lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C., believes one of our "biggest shortcomings" as a society is our "small view of God." We ask Him to help us get through our day, or to achieve tasks that seem just out of our reach, he said. It's almost like we're trying to "make things as easy for God as possible," but God doesn't need that.
The pastor proceeded to tell the story Honi the Circle Maker, a man who lived during a terrible drought in the first century B.C.
"[Honi] got his name because when the people asked him to pray, he put his staff on the ground, drew a circle, kneeled in that circle, and prayed: 'Sovereign Lord, I swear before Your great name that I will not leave this circle until you have mercy upon your children,'" Batterson related. "Now that's a bold prayer! But I believe that God answers bold prayers, because bold prayers honor God."
The rains quickly began, but Batterson said the Sanhedrin criticized Honi for being "too demanding" in his prayers.
"But you can't argue with a miracle," Batterson said with a smile, "and ultimately [Honi] was honored with the prayer that saved a generation."
The story was one that helped inspire Batterson's book, "The Circle Maker," in which he encourages people to pray "until God answers," whether you are physically walking in a circle around a significant area, or metaphorically wrapping an issue in prayer.
"We tend to ask for something and then forget what we prayed for, so that by the time God answers, we forget to give God credit for it!" he said. "[But] God's not a genie in a bottle. It's not about Him serving our purposes. You have to make sure it's in the will of God, it's for the glory of God."
The pastor remarked: "One prayer can change everything. I believe prayer is the difference between the best we can do, and the best God can do."
Batterson said the greatest tragedies are "the prayers that go unanswered, because they go un-asked."
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