About the book

Wonderful prayer surprises come from the unlikely ways and means that God uses to answer us. Surprised by Prayer by Karen Barber is a unique journey of discovery, telling over 40 true stories of answered prayer from people all over the country. It includes:
  • How a pet poodle helped stroke victim Mary Mack Brown return to independent living in her beloved home.
  • How a mystery orchid prompted Ted Corwin decide to ask out his future wife, Lucy.
  • How a disabled colt helped Jama Hedgecoth fulfill her lifelong dream of founding a children's home.
  • How two words in a dream helped architect Jeff Wierenga through a heart transplant. (See the photos at the bottom of this page taken by Jeff.)
  • How Holocaust survivor Alex Gross was saved by a match stick.
  • How author Karen Barber's life was changed when she embarked on an experiment to find and record 100 personal answers to prayer.


Chapter One: Surprised by Prayer
Should We Be Surprised? † Big and Dramatic Answers † Fragile Moments † Right Before Our Eyes † Mysterious Circumstances † Merry Answers † Beginning to See God's Answers † Ready to Be Surprised

Chapter Two: Surprised by Unlikely Means
God's Astonishing Ways and Means † Meant for Each Other † Saved by an Owl Attack † Clipped to the Front Fence † A Cure for the Fear of Flying † The View from Rock Bottom † Living Out Unlikely Means

Chapter Three: Surprised by Presence
God's Manifest Presence † In His Hands † The Leading Lamb and the Protecting Angel † The Watercolor Moment † Matchsticks Against Wolves † Alive and Present While Dead † Living Out Presence

Chapter Four: Surprised by a Word
Words from on High † The Woords Beyond the Golder Doors † Striking Out at the Ball Field † Words at the End of the Rainbow † Help at the Tip of a Pen † Spoken into Existence † Living Out Words

Chapter Five: Surprised by a Call to Pray
Like a Bolt of Lightning Leaving † The Power of the Call † Stopped During a Walk † Praying As God Chooses † Three February Prayers, One March Afternoon † Who Is the One? † "I Never Saw Her Face" † Living Out Prayer Calls

Chapter Six: Surprised by a Partnership
The Power of Partnerships † Drowning in Waves of Love † Fatherhood † A Colt Named Spirit † Living Out Partnerships

Chapter Seven: Surprised by Scripture
A Living Book † A Scripture for Superman † Shatterproof † The Case of the Missing Keys † Standing on the Promises † Curtain Call Across the South China Sea † Living Out the Scriptures

Chapter Eight: Surprised by Power
Special Delivery at the Mailbox † Petition As the Doorway to Faith † Life in Rocking Horse Heaven † Transformed by One Hundred Answers to Prayer † Time to Ask † Surprised by an Opening Prayer

Photos from the book

The thrift store picture described by Karen Barber, Chapter Seven

The painting of the vision seen by artist Geri Gibson Anthony, Chapter Three.

Taken by Jeff Wierenga whose story appears in Chapter Four.

Taken by Jeff Wierenga whose story appears in Chapter Four.

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© Copyright 2020 Karen Barber