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About James Banks

Dr. James Banks and his wife have two adult children and live in Durham, North Carolina, where he is the pastor of Peace Church. He is the author of The Lost Art of Praying Together, Praying the Prayers of the Bible, Prayers for Prodigals, and Prayers for Your Children. Find books by James Banks

Lord of the Moment

By | 2018-11-23T14:22:25+00:00 November 29th, 2018|

Not long ago I was working on a construction project at my son’s home three hours away. The job took days longer than expected, and each morning I prayed we would finish by sunset. But every evening there was more to be done. I wondered why. Could there be a reason for the delay? An answer came the next morning. I was picking up a tool when my phone rang and a stranger’s voice spoke urgently: “Your daughter was injured in an accident..

Who’s Driving?

By | 2018-11-05T16:20:11+00:00 November 12th, 2018|

My neighbor Tim has a figurine on his dashboard of a “wild thing” based on Maurice Sendak’s beloved children’s book Where the Wild Things Are. Not long ago Tim was following me through traffic and made some abrupt moves to keep up. When we arrived, I asked, “Was that the ‘wild thing’ driving?” The following Sunday I forgot my sermon notes at home. I “flew” out of the church to retrieve them, passing Tim along the way...

Your Way, Not Mine

By | 2018-10-12T12:35:36+00:00 October 28th, 2018|

Kamil and Joelle were devastated when their eight-year-old daughter Rima was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia. The disease led to meningitis and a stroke, and Rima lapsed into a coma. The hospital medical team counseled her parents to make arrangements for Rima’s funeral, giving her less than a one percent chance of survival...

Trust Him First

By | 2018-10-05T12:30:16+00:00 October 15th, 2018|

“Don’t let go, Dad!” “I won’t. I’ve got you. I promise.” I was a little boy terrified of the water, but my dad wanted me to learn to swim. He would purposefully take me away from the side of the pool into a depth that was over my head, where he was my only support. Then he would teach me to relax and float...

Legacies of Love

By | 2018-09-12T11:58:31+00:00 September 17th, 2018|

I was paging through my great-grandmother’s Bible when a treasure fell into my lap. On a small scrap of paper, in a young child’s handwriting, were the words, “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted” (Matthew 5:3–4 kjv). Scribbled beside those verses in wobbly cursive was my mother’s signature...

Unchanging Love

By | 2018-08-17T16:22:31+00:00 September 7th, 2018|

When I was in high school I played on the varsity tennis team. I spent many hours of my teenage years trying to improve my skills on four concrete courts located just two blocks from my home. The last time I visited that city, one of the first things I did was drive to the tennis courts, hoping to watch others play and reminisce for a moment. But the old courts, so familiar to my memory, were nowhere to be seen...

Learning to Trust

By | 2018-07-20T15:08:54+00:00 August 28th, 2018|

When I was a teenager I sometimes challenged my mother when she tried to encourage me to have faith. “Trust God. He will take care of you,” she would tell me. “It’s not that simple, Mom!” I would bark back. “God helps those who help themselves!” But those words, “God helps those who help themselves” are nowhere to be found in Scripture. Instead, God’s Word teaches us to depend on Him for our daily needs...

The Gift of Time

By | 2018-07-18T14:46:35+00:00 August 13th, 2018|

I headed into the post office in a big hurry. I had a number of things on my to-do list, but as I entered I was frustrated to find a long line backing up all the way to the door. “Hurry up and wait,” I muttered, glancing at my watch. My hand was still on the door when an elderly stranger approached me. “I can’t get this copier to work,” he said, pointing to the machine behind us. “It took my money and I don’t know what to do...”