Summary: This is a sermon that encourages us, and our church to trust the Lord to do great things through us when we seek to do them for His glory.
Text: Ephesians 3:20-21 Cosperville Baptist Church
Series: Building Project Excursion Pastor Jim Barnes Topic: Prayer, Growth, Success
January 12, 2014
“Asking God To Do Big Things!”
Johnny, a very bright 5 year old, told his daddy he'd like to have a baby brother and, along with his request, offered to do whatever he could to help. His dad, a very bright 35 year old, paused for a moment and then replied, " I'll tell you what, Johnny, if you pray every day for two months for a baby brother, I guarantee that God will give you one!"
Johnny responded eagerly to his dad's challenge and went to his bedroom early that night to start praying for a baby brother.
He prayed every night for a whole month, but after that time, he began to get skeptical. He checked around the neighborhood and found out that what he thought was going to happen, had never occurred in the history of the neighborhood. You just don't pray for two months and then, whammo- a new baby brother. So, Johnny quit praying. After another month, Johnny's mother went to the hospital.
When she came back home, Johnny's parents called him into the bedroom. He cautiously walked into the room, not expecting to find anything, and there was a little bundle lying right next to his mother. His dad pulled back the blanket and there was -- not one baby brother, but two!! His mother had twins!
Johnny's dad looked down at him and said, "Now aren't you glad you prayed?"
Johnny hesitated a little and then looked up at his dad and said, "Yes, but aren't you glad I quit when I did?"
THE TITLE FOR TODAY’S MESSAGE IS:
“Asking God To Do Big Things!”
Today, is a special day where we will consider whether or not to go ahead with adding to our existing church building. And we need to make sure that we pray – and ask God to do big things for this church.
There is not more encouraging verse that I can think of than Ephesians 3:20-21.
If you have your bible, please turn with me to Ephesians 3:20-21.
Paul says, “Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”
FROM THIS PASSAGE I WANT YOU TO SEE:
3 Ways We Should Pray To God In Order To See God Accomplish Great Things Through CBC.
HOW SHOULD WE PRAY TO GOD IN ORDER TO SEE HIM ACCOMPLISH GREAT THINGS THROUGH CBC?
THE FIRST WAY WE SHOULD PRAY IS TOO:
I. Pray Hard For This Church
WE NEED TO PRAY HARD FOR THIS CHURCH.
WHY? WE SHOULD PRAY HARD BECAUSE WE CANNOT DO THIS ON OUR OWN EFFORT.
Notice Verse 20 says, “Now to him who is able…”
THE SUCCESS OF THIS CHURCH DEPENDS ON GOD NOT US.
IF WE ARE TO REACH PEOPLE WITH THE GOSPEL, SEE LIVES CHANGED, SEE A NEW ADDITION COMPLETED TO HELP US MAKE DISCIPLES…..WE NEED TO PRAY HARD.
1 Thessalonians 5:17 commands us, “pray continually” or “Pray without ceasing.”
IN PRAYING HARD – WE ARE DEPENDING ON GOD TO HELP US DO WHAT HE WANTS US TO ACCOMPLISH.
THIS MEANS WE MUST DO THREE THINGS:
THE FIRST THING WE MUST DO IS:
A. We Must Admit Our Helplessness.
Why does he point out that God is able, because you and I are not!
He has been praying for God to do great things in our lives as believers.
Look back at Verse 14.
Ephesians 3:14-20 says, “For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, 15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, 16 that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Those are great things.
And maybe Paul anticipated the Ephesians feeling a little overwhelmed. How can I do this? That is a lot to ask?
But Paul reminds them that this is a task for God not for us.
It depends on Him – His ability not ours!
Verse 20 then says, “Now to him who is able!”
As a believer we need to get rid of the “Phrase”, “I can’t” from our vocabulary. I can’t love that person, I can’t forgive him or her, I can’t change. You are right you can’t but God can help you.