The Power of Prayer
“PRAYER ISN’T JUST A SMALL PART OF WHAT WE DO AS A CHURCH, IT IS IN OUR SPIRITUAL DNA AS THE BODY OF CHRIST. IT IS OUR CONSISTENT ACT OF COMMUNICATION, WORSHIP AND DEPENDENCE UPON THE LORD FOR EVERYTHING.”
But first, if God knows everything… then what’s the point of even praying?
I’d like to suggest 7 reasons why we should pray, even if God knows everything.
WE PRAY BECAUSE...
God desires for, His creation, His children to communicate with Him.
My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
God has created us with this profound ability to hear His voice, and follow Him.
He loves when His creation or His sheep so to speak to call out to Him. He knows each of our voices.
2 Corinthians 5:17-18
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:
The means of reconciliation is communication, the end is restoration.
As Christians, God gives us this ministry of reconciliation to everyone around us, however we must first be reconciled to God. THIS IS HIS DESIRE.
He wants to take our worries
1 Peter 5:7
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
God loves to give good gifts to His children.
1 John 5:14-15
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!
Luke 18:1-8 (READ FROM BIBLE)
Parable of the unjust judge
God is not like the judge, he is always listening to us and we are encouraged to continue asking until an answer is revealed.
God’s answer is often clear… Yes, No or Wait!
Famous quote… “Faith in God includes faith in God’s timing”
Story of not giving exactly what a child wants (instrument)
Prayer encourages earthly relationships and aligns them with the kingdom of heaven.
Seeking the Lord in humility, through prayer often leads to great things
2 Chronicles 7:14
if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
Corporate confession of sin and praying for one another is suggested, for us to heal
James 5:16 (HAVE SLIDE)
Always prayer for others
Ephesians 6:18 (HAVE SLIDE)
1 Timothy 2:1-3 (HAVE SLIDE)
Jesus taught His disciples how to align with heaven in prayer
Matthew 6:9-13 (JUST MENTION, WILL LOOK AT IN A LITTLE BIT)
“It’s so much easier to read about prayer than to actually pray.” -John On-wu-chek-wa
And I would add “it’s so much easier to read (or talk) about prayer than to actually pray.”
Most people would rather gossip, I mean talk about prayer requests, than to actually pray. And that is a slippery slope.
Jesus prayed continuously and urges us to do the same.
Luke’s gospel highlights Jesus’ prayer life
In Luke 3:21-22, He prays before receiving the Spirit
In Luke 6:12, He prays all-night before selecting the Twelve disciples
In Luke 11:5-12 and Luke 18:1-8, He teaches the disciples about being persistent in prayer with two parables
Jesus prays for others
John 17:6-18 (JUST MENTION)
He prayed for the protection of His disciples and that they would be in the truth.
Prayer heals our souls
We need forgiveness, we need to forgive others
1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,
Holy Spirit intercedes for us when we don’t have words
Hard times in life (ie; grieving, joy filled, confused, etc.)
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.
Ephesians 1:16-17 (HAVE SLIDE)
“The infallible test of spiritual integrity, Jesus says, is your private prayer life.” -Tim Keller
WE ARE ENCOURAGED TO PRAY!
Philippians 4:6 (HAVE SLIDE)
Colossians 4:2 (HAVE SLIDE)
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Timothy 2:8
Therefore I want the men everywhere to pray, lifting up holy hands without anger or disputing.
WE PRAY FOR BATTLE!
Ephesians 6:10-20 (READ FROM BIBLE)
HOW SHOULD WE PRAY?
One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.”
He said to them, “When you pray, say: “ ‘Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come.
That God’s name be honored
Focus on his everlasting joy
That God’s kingdom come
Focus on His eternal will
Give us each day our daily bread.
That God’s provision is given
Focus on our present
Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation.’ ”
That God’s forgiveness is granted
Focus on our past
That God’s deliverance will be provided
Focus on our future
I started by saying, “PRAYER ISN’T JUST A SMALL PART OF WHAT WE DO AS A CHURCH, IT IS IN OUR SPIRITUAL DNA AS THE BODY OF CHRIST. IT IS OUR CONSISTENT ACT OF COMMUNICATION, WORSHIP AND DEPENDENCE UPON THE LORD FOR EVERYTHING.”
I truly believe this.
I am so grateful that we have had such a faithful group of prayer warriors in this church.
I know many of you have experienced this in your lives!
-Wednesday night Prayer group
-Small group prayer time
-Elders in homes, meetings
I wanted to end on something that took me by surprise this morning.
-Light that drew me (SLIDE PIC)
-Glare in window (SLIDE PIC)
-Looked outside, just a light (SLIDE PIC)
-Opened the window curtain and looked outside (SLIDE PIC)
***It reminded me that prayer also brings us to the cross.
Jesus prayed to His Father to see if there is any other way to accomplish His will, but there wasn’t.
He went willingly to the cross, despite the pain and persecution.
If we struggle to pray in our lives we can look to the cross for motivation to get back on track in our prayer life as Jesus did.
What is one step you will take this week to be proactive in your prayer life?