Summary: To help see what prayer does for the believer.
THE BY-PRODUCTS OF PRAYER
Jas 4:2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts. (KJV)
INTRDUCTION: There are several things that we need to make a priority for the year 2004. I will not deal with all of them, but one main priority is that we all become more proficient in our prayer life. Out text verse tells us that all of our lacking in the power and will of God is due to our failure to pray.
It also tells us that more can be obtained through prayer than can be obtained by killing – by lusting – by fighting – even by going to war.
I have found in my own Christian life that prayer is the most difficult to do. I can do all the Christian things that we are expected to do except pray like I should. I personally believe and Scripture will verify this that if we pray right everything else will fall into place. I have also experienced this in the past years of ministry. Therefore, I hope that each of you will grab a hold of this matter of prayer and make it a real priority this year. I want to challenge each of you to make part of every day a time for prayer.
I have entitled this the By-Products of Prayer. The first and possibly the greatest by-product is:
I. RENEWED STRENGTH IN OUR LIVES. Isa. 40:20-31.
Isa 40:20 He that is so impoverished that he hath no oblation chooseth a tree that will not rot; he seeketh unto him a cunning workman to prepare a graven image, that shall not be moved.
21 Have ye not known? have ye not heard? hath it not been told you from the beginning? have ye not understood from the foundations of the earth?
22 It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:
23 That bringeth the princes to nothing; he maketh the judges of the earth as vanity.
24 Yea, they shall not be planted; yea, they shall not be sown: yea, their stock shall not take root in the earth: and he shall also blow upon them, and they shall wither, and the whirlwind shall take them away as stubble.
25 To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One.
26 Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth.
27 Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, My way is hid from the LORD, and my judgment is passed over from my God?
28 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.
29 He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.
30 Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: