Prayer

July 26, 2015   I Timothy 2:1 – 8     Prayer  

 

   Cowabunga’s  Shellie 2 crosses  sleep church  Psalm 1 His delight is in the law of the Lord.  TV Video Games Face Book.   35K suicides Luke warm Lead folks to Jesus.  Lord I will do anything   Lost    Call me Lord, Lord Luke 6

    Are there hindrances to prayer?  What are they?  Sin Psalm 66:18  & Isaiah 59:1 + 2. Matt 6:5  - 15   James 1 Ask in faith Heb 11:6   James 4 ask with wrong motives  I Peter 3:7 spouse nothing hinders your prayers. 

      Are there ineffective prayers?   Can certain prayers be ineffective?   Jesus speaks to couple of them in Matthew 6 doesn’t he?   Jesus was not too impressed with vain babblings.   Some people believe just saying words is effective.  It looks like just saying words over and over again is not effective.   Jesus also talked about praying to be seen by men.  That was not effective prayer.  The show off prayer does not go very far.   Prayer that is being expressed to impress others is not really prayer.  The person praying has his attention on others and not on God.   There is no real connection with God.  The person that is babbling is not really praying to God.  People can say the disciple’s prayer in this passage and not even be thinking about the words and unfortunately are not connecting with God. 

     Is unanswered prayer God’s fault or people’s fault?    What was Jesus take on prayer?   Was Jesus pretty positive about answered prayer?   John 14: 12 -14 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.   And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.    You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.   John 15: 7 + 8.  If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.   This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.  John 15:16  You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.  John 16:24 until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

    Matthew 7  “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.   For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.   “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?   Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?    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!  In Luke 18   Jesus tells the disciples that they should always pray and not give up and then tells them the parable of persistent the widow and the unjust judge.  

   E. M. Bounds writes the life of the church is the highest life, and its office is to pray. Its prayer life is the highest life, the most fragrant, and the most conspicuous.    When God’s house on the earth is a house of prayer, then God’s house in heaven is busy and powerful in its plans and movements. ‘For mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people’ (Isaiah 56:7), says our God.   Then, His earthly armies are clothed with the triumphs and spoils of victory, and His enemies are defeated on every hand… The very life and prosperity of God’s cause - even its very existence - depend on prayer.   And the advance and triumph of His cause depend on one thing: that we ask of Him.”  E.M. Bounds   I think that generally when we think of the church we think of fellowship, worship, and preaching.   Jesus was clearing the temple in Matthew 21:13 when he said my house shall be called a house of prayer.  This is a place where God’s people can connect with God and certainly worship and hearing God’s word helps. 

       I was asked recently about prayer and the person said I pray the same things every night.   I told them God wants to hear your heart.   What happened during the day and what needs did you see in the day?   Just pray the stuff on your heart.  Prayer is communication with God.  Vain babblings is not prayer.   It might be called prayer but it is not prayer.  True prayer is connecting with God.  It is communication.  It should be 2 way communication.    Prayer is expressing what is in our heart and we know that God looks on the heart.  Jesus said those that worship will worship in spirit and in truth.        Effective prayer is a transforming prayer.   In the Transformation video by George Otis, Jr., the following words were spoken that stress the requirements for transformation: “It’s risky, aggressive, and brought about through prayer. It’s not predictable and out of our control. There is an unexpectedness of God. We are fooled by strategy. We lack God’s processing power. You can’t format God. We are proud and impatient. God’s approach is to come in through the back door. He shows up, not shows off.  There is a flow with the Holy Spirit that is not stage-managed. He is willing to be invited but only on his terms. 

       Ask the church what is the best prayer?   The best prayer is the answered prayer.  The best prayer is when God connects with me.   The best prayer is when I connect with God.   It is the prayer that is effective and gets God response.    What do you think is the best verse in the bible on prayer?    Do you have a favorite verse in the bible on prayer?   I personally like James 5:16 as I memorized it in the KJ translation the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.   The Amplified bible says the earnest heartfelt continued prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available dynamic in its working.  The person is righteous, persevering and fervent and I think that all of those points mean that the person is praying in faith.    I get the sense that this person walks with the Lord and knows the will of the Lord and perseveres to see God’s response.  Maybe some would say I am reading too much in that verse.   

     Are there different kinds of prayers?     Does one size so to speak fit all?   How do you make out when you buy a one size fits all?    Does that ever not work for you?     Have carpenter come up and ask him to remove a nail driven in wood.  Have him ask for a tool and give him some mechanic tools.  Then state he is a carpenter and give him some carpenter tools such as a ruler.  Then offer a hammer or flat bar.  I think I have been guilty of praying one kind of prayer a lot.   I can identify with Peter when Peter walked on the water and he looked at the wind and the waves and his faith just sort of got blown away.   Peter starts to sink and he cries out lord save me.  

    In the book Secrets to powerful prayer there are chapters on casting all your care, prayer of consecration, united prayer, prayer of praise, worship,(example cast out demons)  thanksgiving, prayer of faith, prayer of agreement, prayer of supplication, prayer of  intercession, watching in the spirit and waiting on God.   God has given us different ways to pray so we can be effective.   We need to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit on how we need to pray. At times God may want you to just believe Him but at times God may want you to get a prayer partner.   Sometimes God may burden you for a long time on something.  God may want you to get a prayer partner and write up a contract and agree in prayer regarding something. 

      When we come before God there are a couple of things we should remember.  It is important to remember to confess sin.    James 5:16 says therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.  Many times the confessing of sins is totally ignored.   We need to listen to God.  Do not barge in.   It is important to be thankful     I Thessalonica 5 says in everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you and pray without ceasing.  The Holy Spirit is telling us to be a thankful person.  Psalms 100 tells us to enter his courts with praise and thanksgiving. 

    Your prayers are very important.  Jesus always spoke very positive about God answering prayers but many prayers are ineffective.   The problem is not with God but with us.  I believe that you want to have an effective prayer life.   We all want to see answers to our prayers.  God is able to do and desires to do great and mighty things.  He is a great God bring great requests before him. 

     In the book of Daniel there is a great prayer.   “Now, our God, hear the prayers and petitions of your servant.   For your sake, Lord, look with favor on your desolate sanctuary.    Give ear, our God, and hear; open your eyes and see the desolation of the city that bears your Name. We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of your great mercy.   Lord, listen! Lord, forgive! Lord, hear and act!    For your sake, my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your Name.”   I have heard many people pray and ask God to help someone because they are so good.  Daniel says we do not pray because we are righteous.   He prayed on the foundation of God’s mercy.   I often pray God you paid a great price for us on the cross and answer this request for your sake.  Daniel also prayed fervently.   Lord listen, Lord forgive, Lord hear and act!   Answer me quickly the Psalmist prayed.    Psalm 70:1 Hasten O God to save me O Lord come quickly to help me. 

     When we pray we need to be vitally united with God.   Being vitally united to God will bring you to the place where all you ask will be granted because when you are in full union with Him everything that is in you comes from Him.  When you vitally united with Him you’ll want what He wants.  You’ll have in your heart what he has in his heart.  Therefore your prayers will be his prayers and you can be sure He will answer every prayer that originates with Him.   That makes good sense!   God would never initiate a prayer He does not intend to answer.  The prayer that comes from Him will be finished in Him.    Prayer is God’s idea.  Answered prayer is God’s idea not man’s.  God invites us to pray.  God wants us to pray even though God knows our needs before we ask him.  We are commanded to pray.     

     We can cast all our care and worries on the Lord.   Why should we do that?   Well God is not going to forget about them.  When God has them it is not dependent upon my memory which is not getting better as I age.  If you are counting on me to remember something you find yourself disappointed.   God is not a man and I am so glad.   It is not giving my concerns to someone who does not care about me.  God cares deeply about me.   It is not giving my concerns to someone who cannot help me with them.  God has the power, wisdom and ability to deal with my concerns.  As you really think about this the smartest thing you can do is to give them over to God.   The stupid thing is for me to fret and worry and yet that seems to be my choice at times.   The Psalmist in Psalm 139 says God you know my thoughts long before I think them.  You are around me.   You are thinking about me.   Your thoughts toward me are more than the grains of sand on the sea shore.  God is involved in our life. 

        Philippians 4 tells us do not be anxious but pray about everything and what happens?   God’s peace which transcends everything will guard your heart and your mind.   Pray about everything.  You unload it to God.   Did you ever have someone unload their burdens and problems to you?   God tells us to unload it to him.  You tell God about it and then you pray and give it to him.  When you give it to him it is His not yours.  It is insulting to give something to someone and then take it back.  How often have done that to God?  We need to roll things on God and leave them with him.  Thank you lord you are working on that issue.   We need to help each other to be strong in faith.

.  Some have gone out on the night to visit and witness and they go to a person’s house who they know are unsaved.   God is not willing that any should perish so they claim their salvation that night.         Folks that may not happen.  Then they say God did not answer my prayer.   God did not keep his word.  What a stab to God.  A lot of people burn their faith by not being wise in their prayers.  We can cast our care upon the Lord and the next day something good happens and we think wow God is answering my prayers.   Then the next day something bad happens and our faith dies.   In a couple of situations I am in I know there will be some bad days.  Change is a process and it certainly is not always uphill.     Prayer is a process I believe.  To pray the prayer of faith we must know what the will of God is.   We need to study the bible and seek God’s will.   Lord how do you want me to pray in this situation?   We are his servants. We need to be moved by the Holy Spirit.  

        We can grow in our walk with the Lord where we command something to be done by faith.  In Jesus name you will be healed.  In Jesus name God is going to give you that baby or job.  It is like telling the mountain to be removed.  In Secrets to powerful prayer they mention an illustration of that.  A traveling minister was several miles from home and received a message that his daughter had an abnormal growth in her eyes and there needed to be an immediate intervention to correct it.   The minister preached on divine healing and their whole family never had to go to the doctor.   You would think that he would immediately go into prayer about it but he did not.  He dismissed it from his mind finishing his preaching schedule for the day.   Then at night he would sleep for an hour or so and then get up and pray and review scriptures on healing.  He would read and meditate and then sleep and then read and meditate and sleep.  His heart was filled with faith.  He cursed the growth and told it to go and sent a message to his daughter telling her it is done and the growth disappeared.   Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.  Casing all your care on him for he cares for you.