Summary: Lessons From A Faith That Wouldn’t Quit!
· Persistent is defined as ‘refusing to give up’, ‘never ceasing’, or ‘continuing to exist despite interference or treatment’
· Ill.: There’s a supposedly true story of a Welsh woman who lived in a remote valley in Wales. She went to a great deal of trouble and expense to have electrical power installed in her home. However, after a couple of months, the electric company noticed she didn’t seem to use very much electricity at all.
Thinking there might be a problem with the hookup, they sent a meter reader out to check on the matter. The man came to the door and said, "We’ve just checked your meter and it doesn’t seem that you’re using much electricity. Is there a problem?"
"Oh no" she said. "We’re quite satisfied. We turn on the electric lights every night to see how to light our lamps and then we switch them off again."
- Now, why didn’t this woman make more use of her electricity?
She believed in electricity.
She believed the promises of the electric company when they told her about it.
She went to a great deal of trouble and expense to have her house wired for it.
BUT - she didn’t understand the potential of electricity in her home.
AND SO, she used it’s power sparingly
· Many Christians are like this woman,
o We believe in prayer.
o We believe in the promises that the Bible tells us about prayer
o We have the power of God available to us, 24/7.
§ But we only use it sparingly. Just until we can get things back to a point that we can handle life, without God… without prayer
· Mt. 7:7-11 “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?”
· I John 5:14-15 “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.”
· I John 3:22 “And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.”
· Ps. 118:25 “Save now, I beseech thee, O LORD: O LORD, I beseech thee, send now prosperity.”
· Luke 18 introduces us to a woman, a widow, who had a persistent faith.
o She wants to teach us something today, regarding how we, too, can have a persistent faith.
I. Persistent Faith Is FOCUSED, 3
A. Focused On The Person With The Power ‘judge’
i. We need to focus on WHO God is!
ii. We need to focus on WHAT God has done!
iii. We need to focus on WHEN God has lasted failed!
iv. We need to focus on WHERE God is now seated
v. We need to focus on WHY God does what He does! (His good pleasure)
vi. We need to focus on HOW God moves!
1. God’s ways are not our ways!
2. God’s timing is not our timing
3. God’s priorities are not our priorities
4. God’s purpose is not our purpose!
B. Focused On Get A Need Met, ‘Avenge Me’
i. James 1:1-3 (Have not because…)
II. Persistent Faith Is INVOLVED, 5
A. It’s involved, even when it stands alone, ‘widow’
B. It’s involved, even when it seems to be ignored, ‘troubleth me’
C. It’s involved, even when it has already asked for something in the past, ‘continual’
D. It’s involved, even when it effort, ‘coming’
E. It’s involved, UNTIL it gets an answer
i. Dan. 10:2-14
ii. ( From Paul Harvey) We should be like the 3-year-old boy (that Paul Harvey told about) who went to the grocery store with his mother. Before they entered the grocery store she said to him, "Now you’re not going to get any chocolate chip cookies, so don’t even ask."
She put him up in the cart & he sat in the little child’s seat while she wheeled down the aisles. He was doing just fine until they came to the cookie section. He saw the chocolate chip cookies & he stood up in the seat & said, “Mom, can I have some chocolate chip cookies?” She said, “I told you not even to ask. You’re not going to get any at all.” So he sat back down.