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Connecting to the POWER of PRAYER

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Connecting to the POWER of PRAYER
PRAYER

Father, thank you that we can abide in you and in your Son Jesus. Please keep us tightly connected so the sap of your love can flow freely into our lives, and through our lives into the lives of others. Amen.

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“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit;apart from me you can do nothing.
Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit;apart from me you can do nothing.
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Introduction:
, Introduction: A Christian can ONLY be as strong as his/her prayer life. Prayer is the believer’s direct communication TO God. Your personal relationship with the Lord CANNOT grow without proper communication. This includes talking, listening, believing and heeding. The purpose of this lesson is to teach the basics of a proper prayer life so that these lines of communication can be open and effective in your life. 1. What is the PURPOSE of Prayer? A. Prayer is NOT to change God’s will or His mind. It is for you to be conformed to His will. ; . Your prayers should change YOU! Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me. ii. Jacob wrestled with God, and it was Jacob who changed. The House of Hope Atlanta 2 B. An effective prayer life ensures peace of heart and mind. : 6Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. C. Prayer draws you close to God and proves His ability to meet your need. NLT: 6 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. 7Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. i. God is active in every detail of your life. He knows what you need before you even ask. . God meets our needs through affliction and pain to teach and mature us. , . Avoid reaching the place in your life where you feel you have need of nothing. . It is essential to give thanks in ALL things, including needs and difficult times of life. ;
A Christian can ONLY be as strong as his/her prayer life. Prayer is the believer’s direct communication TO God. Your personal relationship with the Lord CANNOT grow without proper communication. This includes talking, listening, believing and heeding. The purpose of this lesson is to teach the basics of a proper prayer life so that these lines of communication can be open and effective in your life.
1. What is the PURPOSE of Prayer?
A. Prayer is NOT to change God’s will or His mind. It is for you to be conformed to His will. ; David’s prayer was to be taught to do God’s will, not his own. A prayer for guidance is self-centered if it doesn’t recognize God’s power to redirect our lives. Asking God to restructure our priorities awakens our minds and stirs our will.
i. Your prayers should change YOU! Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me. Like David, we must ask God to cleanse us from within, clearing our hearts and spirits for new thoughts and desires. Right conduct can come only from a clean heart and spirit. Ask God to create a pure heart and spirit in you.
ii. Jacob wrestled with God, and it was Jacob who changed. Jacob continued this wrestling match all night just to be blessed. He was persistent. God encourages persistence in all areas of our lives, including the spiritual. Where in your spiritual life do you need more persistence? Strong character develops as you struggle through tough conditions.
B. An effective prayer life ensures peace of heart and mind. 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Imagine never being “anxious about anything”! It seems like an impossibility-we all have worries on the job, in our homes, at school. But Pauls advice is to turn our worries into prayers. Do you want to worry less? Then pray more! Whenever you start to worry, stop and pray.
C. Prayer draws you close to God and proves His ability to meet your need.
NLT: 6 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. 7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. Carrying your worries, stresses, and daily struggles by yourself shows that you have not trusted God fully with your life. It takes humility, however, to recognize that God cares, to admit your need, and let others in God family help you. Letting God have your anxieties calls for action, not passivity. Don’t submit to circumstances, but to the Lord who controls circumstances.
i. God is active in every detail of your life. He knows what you need before you even ask. We can never pray to much if our prayers are honest and sincere. Before you start to pray, make sure you mean what you say.
ii. God meets our needs through affliction and pain to teach and mature us. ,
iii. Avoid reaching the place in your life where you feel you have need of nothing. In times of plenty, we often take credit for our prosperity and become proud that our own hard work and cleverness have made us rich. It is easy to get so busy collecting and managing wealth that we push God right out of our lives. But it is God who gives us everything we have, and it is God who ask us to manage it for him.
iv. It is essential to give thanks in ALL things, including needs and difficult times of life. ; Paul knew how to be content whether he had plenty or whether he was in need. Do you have great needs, or are you discontented because you don’t have what you want? He will supply all your needs, but in a way that he knows is best for you.
In Conclusion “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit;apart from me you can do nothing.
Holman New Testament Commentary: John IV. Life Application: The Discipled Minority

By the year 2001, a minority majority will exist in 226 U.S. counties. California reached a state-wide minority majority in 2000 and Texas will get there by 2010. In less than one life span, Americans who belong to racial and ethnic minority groups—Blacks, Asians, Native Americans, and Hispanics—will outnumber non-Hispanic whites and attain a majority about the year 2050.

Minority strongholds like New Mexico, Hawaii, and the aforementioned counties show us the vanguard of a demographic shift that will transform politics and business over the next fifty years. The specific rapidly-growing areas will be few and far between; we will have some areas in which whites will be a minority and others in which each of the traditional minorities will represent small and foreign-looking groups.

If we plot this on a map, we see a vast half-moon of Hispanic and black populations across the whole southern third of the United States, while huge northern blocks, including some entire states, remain almost exclusively white. More than ever before in North American history, everyone will get a chance to feel what it is like to be a member of a minority group.

In this section of the Fourth Gospel, Jesus attempted to explain to his disciples how they would no longer be majority Jews in their own homeland of Israel, but would become spiritual resident aliens, pilgrims, and strangers on planet earth. To endure the world’s hatred and still offer necessary witness, they had no choice but constant abiding in the vine.

Upon concluding his teaching about the vine and the branches and what that would mean in terms of a minority relationship to surrounding culture, Jesus returned to what he had been saying in the upper room. He referred again to the coming Counselor, the Helper who would make it possible for believers to function as a spiritual minority group.

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