The Importance of PRAYER #2
By Pastor George Lehman
Hebrews 4:12(Amp) – For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.
(If you’re going to be a success in every area of your life, you’re going to have to know how to PRAY.)
1 Thessalonians 5:17 (Amp) – Be unceasing in prayer [praying perseveringly]. This instruction is given for our own good!
This is a constant call we must be obedient to this call.
Let me ask you this question as we share on this awesome subject.
What do you think about your prayer life? Is it Something you tend to take for granted. Does it need improvement?
Have you ever really examined your prayer on things like how you pray, when you pray, the time you pray, the things you pray, are you serious when you pray.
Because prayer is the very heart of Christian commitment.
Henrietta C Mears
“It is necessary for us to pray. A ruffled lake cannot reflect the stars in the heaven or the sun in the sky. And a disturbed and restless soul can get very little Vision of God. No direction or answers. Prayer is essential to productive living.”
The truth is: If one doesn’t pray one doesn’t go on into the higher realms of God.
John Wesley: – “God does nothing but in answer to prayer.”
Luke 11:1 – Then He was praying in a certain place; and when He stopped, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord TEACH US TO PRAY”. I always wonder what they saw or heard that drove them to ask.
To learn prayer, men must pray.
We learn prayer’s deepest depths; In prayer, not in books.
We reach prayers highest, heights: – In prayer, not from sermons.
Prayer is skill developed through experience.
Every one of the spiritual giants you know, travelled the road of prayer. No matter how steep or tough (no matter what the cost).
James 5:16B (Amp) – The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available (dynamic in its working).
James 5:16 says He who is in good standing with God and works at prayer will see much done, will have a life full of results.
The story of George Müller –Once, while crossing the Atlantic in August 1877, his ship ran into thick fog.
He explained to the captain that he needed to be in Quebec by the following afternoon, but Captain Joseph E. Dutton said that he was slowing the ship down for safety.
Mueller asked to use the chartroom to pray for the lifting of the fog. The captain followed him down, claiming it would be a waste of time. After Müller prayed a very simple prayer, the captain started to pray, but Müller stopped him; partly because of the captain’s unbelief, but mainly because he believed the prayer had already been answered.
Müller said, “Captain, I have known my Lord for more than fifty years and there is not one instance that I have failed to have an audience with the King. Get up, Captain, for you will find that the fog has gone.” When the two men went back to the bridge, they found the fog had lifted, and Müller was able to keep his appointment. The captain became a Christian shortly afterwards.
Jesus’ private prayers produced His public miracles.
1 Peter 2:21 – He left us an example to follow in His steps.
Yet we want so much from God and apply ourselves to such little prayer.
1 Peter 4:7 (NIV) – The end of all things is near. Therefore, be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.
Colossians 4:2 – Devote yourself to prayer being watchful and thank full.
Oxford Dictionary on devote: – Give up (oneself) one’s efforts i.e., surrender to prayer.
To pray is to change. If you refuse to change, a clear sign is you’ve stopped praying. A changing life is a praying life.
If you want to be used by God, you need to spend time with God.
Corrie Ten Boom – “Prayer is powerful. The devil smiles when we make plans, he laughs when we get too busy, but he trembles when we pray.”
PRAYER IS LETHAL to satan
Satan will use every means to destroy the Christians prayer life.
Paul wrote Ephesians 6:18 – Pray at all times (on every occasion in every season) in the Spirit with all (manner of) prayer and requests. To that end (to able to Pray) keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance, interceding in behalf of all the saints (God’s consecrated people).
First pray then work.
The old saying: never speak to people about God until you have spoke to God about people.
Why is prayer so hard – the reason is when we go to God by prayer the devil knows we go to fetch power and strength against him.
That’s way he opposes us all he can.
E.N. Bounds wrote: “So we come to one of the crying evils of these times, Maybe of all times, Little or no praying, Of these two evils, perhaps little praying is worse than no praying.
He qualifies his statement by saying.
Little praying is a kind of a make-believe.
A salve for the conscience
How we hinder the very cause we claim to believe in so deeply. We are not on the way we’re in the way.
We are always so full of excuses as to why we can’t pray.
No time, too busy, overslept again, I don’t know how to pray, weariness, tiredness, and God didn’t answer my prayer.
When people cease to pray
No matter what the reasons – Christians backslide, Youth rebel, preachers leave pulpits, mission fields close, church denominations die.
How true this is, a sinning man will stop praying, and a praying man will stop sinning.
Prayer demands our best.
God is not pleased with a few moments.
Like when we rise and mumble a few words – or at the end of a tiring day when our strength is at it’s lowest.
I am convinced God’s heart breaks when He sees and hears our pitiful excuses and what we dish up and call it prayer.
In truth: – after all is said and done – more is said than done.
Don’t become talkers about prayer instead decide now you are going to be a doer of prayer.
You are going to have to take (not make) time to pray.
It does not matter where or when we pray as long as we do pray.
There is never a time we cannot enter God’s great throne room. We always have an audience with the King.
Prayer must become a constant habit in our lives.
Jesus’ words to us: Luke 18:1 – Also (Jesus) told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to turn coward (faint, lose heart, and give up).
I read about a small Oklahoma town that had two churches and one distillery. Members of both churches complained that the distillery was giving the community a bad image. And to make matters worse the owner of the distillery was an outspoken atheist. He didn’t believe in God one bit. The church people had tried unsuccessfully for years to shut down the distillery. So finally, they decided to hold a joint Saturday night prayer meeting. They were going to ask God to intervene and settle the matter.
The church folks gathered on Saturday night and there was a horrible thunderstorm raging outside and to the delight of the church members lightening hit that old brewery and it burned to the ground.
The next morning the sermons that were preached in both churches were on the power of prayer. But the insurance adjusters promptly notified the distillery owner that they were not going to pay for the damages because the fire was an act of God and that was an exclusion in the policy.
The distillery owner was furious, and he sued both churches claiming that they had conspired with God to destroy his business. But the churches denied that they had anything to do with the cause of the fire.
The residing judge opened the trial with these words: I find one thing in this case most perplexing – we have a situation here where the plaintiff, an atheist is professing his belief in the power of prayer, and the defendants all faithful church members are denying the very same power.
The unsaved people who do not live for God, know where to find Him in hours of need, whereas so many Christians don’t think it’s necessary to pray every day to keep their relationship deep and constant, they also don’t really believe God answers prayer anyway.