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What is Prayer 4 - Key to Growth

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What is Prayer 4 – Key to Growth NV 6/24/01 am

OS: Rescue Squad

I.      When you talk about prayer you ultimately have to talk about mission.

A.     We are instructed to pray about many things, but with great passion Jesus entreats His disciples to pray for the lost.

B.      Luke 10:2

C.     What follows the account of the 72 is interesting.

                             1.          The Good Samaritan – Religious leaders were too busy to help a man in need.

                             2.          In the home of Martha – Martha is too busy to sit at the feet of Jesus.

                             3.          Some would make the application here that we are too busy to do the work of the Lord, but I tend to believe the major barrier to more earnest prayer is the fear of change.

II.   When you talk about prayer you have to talk about the harvest, because the One we pray to is the Lord of the harvest.

A.     Planting seed is our job…the Harvest belongs to the Lord.

                             1.          1 Corinthians 35 What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task.  6 I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow.  7 So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.  8 The man who plants and the man who waters have one purpose, and each will be rewarded according to his own labor.  9 For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.

                             2.          God is the Lord of the harvest, and if we grow as a church it will be only because God works through us to reach people. Glory is brought to His name in the redemption of people.

B.      Jesus says ask the Lord of Harvest to send workers.

                             1.          How frustrating it must be to have fields ready for the harvest and no laborers to harvest.

                             2.          Illu – Man from the city moved to the country and bought 100 chicks, and they all died. 100 more and they all died. So he wrote to the extension service and said, “I want to be a successful chicken farmer, and I’ve lost all of both 100 chick groups. Can you help me? Am I planting them too close or too deep?” Service replied, “We can’t answer your question until we have a soil sample.”

                             3.          Harvest is an urgent term. There is only a small time frame to harvest before it’s too late. (Our Tomatoes)

                             4.          John 4 35 Do you not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.

a.      The term ‘ripe’ is literally ‘white’.

b.     Scholars believe Jesus is making reference to wheat that has already turned white and is nearly to far gone to harvest.

Priorities – life, same for the church. We can get so mixed up. When’s the last time you prayed for the harvest? When is the last time you looked out at the sea of people in this county and said the harvest is plentiful please God send workers for the harvest. When is the last time we prayed for the harvest as a church?

     We can get so wrapped up in this stuff going on. Now I believe we need to be doing what we are doing, and that we are simply being prepared to be about the harvest. I believe it’s from God that we are going to have the opportunity to leave and move to a new location so that growth for years to come can continue for this church. To allow God to build something through us for our children and theirs.

     But let’s not allow our priorities to get mixed up – we are to be about the harvest! We need to be praying…our prayers will reveal where our heart is. If you haven’t been praying for a harvest you need to examine your heart, and if we haven’t been praying for a harvest as a church we need to examine our hearts together. It is perfectly understandable to get priorities mixed up, and that really isn’t a problem unless we are unwilling to change. We have several opportunities for prayer as a church. Monday morning, Sunday morning, Wednesday evening. I want to challenge you to help this church pray for a harvest.

     Things started happening here as a church in ways beyond our understanding when we became more serious about prayer. It was a couple of years ago that the elders decided that they needed to be more about prayer and study. The prayer meeting on Monday came out of that, and since that time things have happened at Northview beyond our ability to explain. That is why I am convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that it God who is busy here. He is the Lord of the harvest, and if you ever question what God is going to be about its harvest. He is the Lord of the harvest.

Worker? Missionaries to come here, more preachers…. God’s people are already in the world, we work there, go to school there, do our grocery shopping there, etc. Go ye means Go me! We are asking Him to send us. “I’m not the type…” God can use you if you ask Him. God will use the talents you have. We are all in the army. We are all members of the body. There is no hierarchy in the church. We must ask. Ask the Lord of harvest to send workers.

The fields are white for the harvest. It’s fixing to be to late. There is urgency concerning the harvest. That is why we are making the changes we are making in the auditorium. We can’t wait for a move! We’ve reached 80%, we are going to have 5 to 10 years here in this building and this auditorium is not going to hold us.

I’m afraid. I’m more comfortable with 50-80 people. It would be easier to stay put. But we can’t do it and be His church. We must do whatever it takes and be uncomfortable. God is in the soul business, and if we are not in the soul business then we are in the wrong business. I wonder sometimes if it’s alright to talk about a mere 25 acres. Why not a hundred acres. I can dream up all kinds of things. Retirement home/children’s home combination. Garage for mechanics to donate their skills to take care of cars belonging to single mothers or those who cannot afford it.

We would have lost our first love if we stay in this auditorium for 10 years. There are too many people in this area. There are thousands that would be here this morning if they thought it would make a difference in their life. That workers going out into the field saying hey Northview has made such a difference in my life.

God wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.

Are you willing to work pray change? The harvest is ready!

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