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Experiencing Healing Prayer: How God Turns Our Hurts into Wholeness Paperback – April 28, 2005
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I immediately found myself caught up in Richardson's journey to lead people with emotional brokenness and wounds from the past toward emotional healing. This book should prove of immense value to people struggling with inner brokenness or who know someone who is. (Jim Miller Book Review, May 28, 2008)
"[Richardson] has urged the creation of an emotionally and spiritually safe space for both recipients and prayer ministers, encircled by the presence of God within the church community." (Heather Walker Peterson, Ph.D., Prayer Ministry Leader, Church of the Cross, Hopkins, MN)
"As a pastor for over thirty years, I only wish it had been written over thirty years ago! It is amazingly balanced in its approach to healing. It is immensely practical. It is also very biblical and historically orthodox. Rick's definition of what healing is, that it is 'not primarily about escape or relief from pain . . . [but] is primarily about the transformation of the person into a truer and more whole follower, worshipper and lover of God,' so needs to be heard today." (Fr. George Kacena, Church of the Great Shepherd)
"I found the book most unique and refreshing. Rick Richardson integrates Jesus' power to heal with Jesus' mission to the world. Often healing prayer becomes the Christian substitute for the secular obsession to 'be all that we can be,' which means to do whatever we can to make ourselves feel good. Rick speaks to the reality of God's healing power and how it moves through us toward a world that is in desperate need of reconciliation on so many levels. This is a truth that the church needs to hear and embrace." (Nina Lau Branson, Methodist church prayer leader)
"I chose Leanne Payne as a mentor through her writings--so you can imagine my interest when I saw Rick Richardson's book. I have been giving it a thorough working through and now am routinely recommending it for all my clients and others I pray for." (Jane Willard, counselor and prayer leader)
"The journey of 'dying to self' so Christ can come alive in us appears to be a misunderstood and elapsed discipline in the lives of Christians and the church today. Rick Richardson offers practical insights into how we respond to the incarnation of God through healing prayer. I will pass this on to the prayer ministers in our church." (Jeanine Parolini, Director of Adult Discipleship and Small Groups, North Heights Lutheran Church)
"Whenever I see a book on healing prayer, I wonder if it is charismatic or evangelical in its approach; is it biblical or practical, psychological or spiritual? When it comes to Rick Richardson's new book, Experiencing Healing Prayer, the answer is . . . yes! Rick provides us with a model for healing prayer that is all of the above. While firmly committed to the authenticity and authority of Scripture, Rick guides us into a deeper partnership with the Holy Spirit as we venture to petition God for the healing of friends and strangers. He helps us recognize, from both Scripture and personal experience, the signs of God's healing presence as we pray with and for others. And healing is more than the reversal of a physical ailment; healing is the biblical hope and promise of a satisfied soul. Rick has written a road map for many of us who need to pursue a greater depth of healing (i.e., wholeness) for ourselves, even as we seek to pray for others and train others to join us in the journey." (Phil Miglioratti, National Pastors' Prayer Network)
"God will use Experiencing Healing Prayer to dive deep into your mind and heart, helping you to understand and apply the personal and spiritual healing you need to have a healthy, balanced, Christ-centered life. Rick Richardson gives us personal and practical tools to make sure the wounds and pains of our past do not wreck the healthy and whole future we all yearn for." (Dr. Steve Shadrach, Founder, Student Mobilization, and Director of Mobilization, U.S. Center for World Mission)
"We live in an age that desperately needs healing to be the heartbeat of the church. Experiencing Healing Prayer is an answer to that need. Rick Richardson intimately testifies of his own experience of healing and shares his wise gift of teaching to train others. Remarkably, he simplifies the complex without being simplistic while offering genuine hope for wounded souls and clear practical steps for those who care for the soul. Pastors who want to see their congregations transformed by the healing power of God will want a copy of Experiencing Healing Prayer for every member of their leadership team." (The Rev. William Beasley, Church of the Redeemer, Network Leader for Anglican Mission in America)
"Experiencing Healing Prayer is a remarkable book. Rick Richardson . . . simply but profoundly leads his readers into the life of prayer for healing. His use of the miracles of the Gospels to develop a truly biblical doctrine of healing is coupled with suggestions for dealing with deep human wounds--emotional, physical and spiritual. Better yet, he has furnished me wise guidance on my own spiritual journey!" (Paul Emanuel Larsen, President Emeritus, Evangelical Covenant Church)
From the Publisher
"This book came to me just as a group of people in our congregation were asking, 'How can we develop a healing prayer ministry?' I can't imagine a more thoughtful and practical resource than Experiencing Healing Prayer by Rick Richardson. Even where readers may differ with the author, they'll find honesty and sensitivity and experience on every page." Brian McLaren, pastor, author of A Generous Orthodoxy
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I found the book balanced and practical. I like it so much, I started to translate the book to Chinese. We have not found a publisher in China but we pray that God will open a door and use us to bring healing to Chinese communities.
Healing prayer brings us into an awareness of God's presence but does not necessarily bring the results we want. The activity of intercession moves from performing for answers to collaborating with God. Intercessors ask Jesus: What are you praying? How can I enter into your prayers for this person or this situation? For Richardson's own journey, "The greatest gain has been the increase of my capacity to know, understand and love God."
Co-author of The Heart of Racial Justice, Richardson urges prayer ministers to affirm varying expressions of prayer based on culture, personality, and experience instead of revering intuitive prayer. Although he comments on ethnicity, he does not acknowledge potential differences of prayer language based on gender. Nonetheless, he covers the centrality of gender identity to our healing journey as well as sexual addictions, forgiveness, and the influence of family of origin, areas through which he encourages prayer ministers to walk. Readers process these middle chapters through reflection-and response-sections, guiding them to ponder, pray, and worship.
When I have described Richardson's final chapter to other prayer ministry leaders, their eyebrows raise in intrigue. Leaders fret that those who come to receive prayer will depend emotionally on the ministers: they vary the prayer ministers each week and use both genders. Richardson inverts this concern at the book's end. The pitfalls are numerous for prayer ministers themselves--to find their sole sense of intimacy through listening to others' cares, to take on another's anxiety, and to attach their identity to their power and performance.
Ultimately, in his book, he has urged the creation of an emotionally and spiritually safe place for both recipients and prayer ministers, encircled by the presence of God within the church community.