Summary: Today we conclude our series, iTruths: Life Lessons for the iPod Generation, with a message on prayer.
November 4, 2007
iPray – “FRIEND DAY”
Today we conclude our series, iTruths: Life Lessons for the iPod Generation, with a message on prayer. Prayer is something that pretty much everyone understands, everyone gets, everyone does…at some point in their lives. People pray when a family member is sick. They pray when they’re about to take a test they haven’t prepared for properly. They pray when they are hurting, when they are lonely, when they see a girl or a guy that they really want to take on a date. People know how to pray.
People have been praying from the beginning of time. In Genesis 4, it states that people were “calling on the name of the Lord.” Moses prayed, Joshua prayed, David prayed, Paul prayed, even Jesus prayed. He got away for 40 days for prayer, He taught us the manner in which we were to pray. Prayer has always been an important part of the human experience.
After 9/11, everyone prayed. People had a deep desire to talk to almighty God for help in our time of need. In our lives, we often feel that need, we often sense that we need to seek out the one who created all there is, who created the heavens and earth. For we all know that we are not as strong as we would like to be, not as capable as we would hope, we don’t have it together as much as we try to put on.
Unfortunately, many times prayer is seen as nothing more than a way to get things. It is seen as a tool that can help us obtain what we want, what we desire, but we don’t see prayer for what it really is. You see, prayer is a powerful resource in our lives. A way that we can:
CALL ON GOD
DEPEND ON GOD
COMMUNE WITH GOD
KNOWING THAT WE CAN’T MAKE IT THROUGH LIFE WITHOUT HELP
Today, I want to share five principles with you that will help you understand what prayer is, why it is important, what it can do for us, and how God deeply desires that conversation with us on a regular basis. God desires to commune with us in a very real way. A way that can change our lives!
1) “i” = You, the Individual
God often talks about the family throughout scripture, however, a relationship with Christ is always between YOU and GOD. No one else matters. Nothing else can help you in that relationship. No one else can play a role in that relationship, no one else can bring you closer to God. That is something that only YOU can do.
Josh. 24:15 And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”
John 21:19b-22 Then he said to him, "Follow me!" 20 Peter turned and saw [John]. 21 When Peter saw him, he asked, "Lord, what about him?" 22 Jesus answered, "If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me!"
Now, can you influence others to follow your decision? Yes!
But, again, only they can make up their own minds for themselves.
In the Bible, we often read about how entire families are saved after the leader of the household accepts Christ. That influence is powerful.
Acts 16:31 So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
But when it comes down to it, it doesn’t matter how influential, how important, how significant someone is in your life, only YOU can make the decision to follow Christ.
2) “P” = Prayer is Personal
Luke 11:2a And Jesus said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven…
You see, Just as a child runs up to his father and asks for something, that is how God wants us to approach him.
I don’t know about you, but when my kids come up to me, they don’t say, “Oh, Holy & Righteous Father – bestower of bountiful blessings – Giver of all that is good! Yada yada yada… J They come to me and…
My Friend, God doesn’t want impersonal formality & liturgy. He wants your love from your heart! He wants your personal adoration that comes from a heart of appreciation and thanksgiving.
Rom. 8:15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”
You see, when we know the Lord Jesus Christ in a PERSONAL way – more than just a person in history – and we have asked him to forgive us from our sins and come into our lives and save us, then we can go to the very god who created as if He was our own Father!