Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: God is moved to action through our persistent prayers offered up to him!

TEXT: Luke 18:1-8

TITLE: Praying with Excellence - P.U.S.H. Through (praying with PERSISTENCE)

SERIES: Being the Church with Excellence!

TOPIC: Persistence in prayer

OCCASION: Burnside Christian Church, March 17, 2013

PROP.: God is moved to action through our persistent prayers offered up to him!

INTRODUCTION: Good morning! Please open your Bible to Luke 18.

We are a church that desires to be committed to excellence…in whatever we do. Whether we are apart or together, everything we do…we are striving for excellence. Our model for what excellence looks like is the early church…the one that was birthed at Pentecost in acts chapter 2.

Our theme verses are on the wall. And what we’ve learned is that the early church was continually devoted to the right things. THAT is what helped them to be excellent. And so too, we if we desire to be excellent, we must be continually devoted to those things as well.

So we have been studying God’s word to see how we can be excellent when it comes to prayer.

Here’s where we’ve been in this series:

1. “Lord teach us to PRAY.” Luke 11:1. This was a request that the disciples had of Jesus. Those 12 men who followed Jesus for nearly 3 years wanted Jesus to teach them…They didn’t ask Jesus to teach them to teach lessons like Jesus taught. They didn’t ask Jesus to teach them how to perform miracles. They asked Jesus to teach them to PRAY! They wanted a prayer life that was significant, earnest and powerful. That’s where we started.

Then we looked at

2. Becoming a Circle Maker - Joshua 6. We learned that we have to be specific in regards to what we pray for. Generic prayers produce generic results. What exactly do you want God to do with YOUR Jericho? Become a circle maker who prays specifically.

Last week we learned that we need to PRAY BIG!

3. Small people…BIG prayers - Numbers 11

The God we pray to is a generous God is gracious and powerful. So much so that he provided quail to the Israelites as they wandered in the desert.

PRAYER CIRCLES - three tables. Visit them. There are some BIG prayer requests on those sheets of paper

Today we learn that as we pray, we need to have persistence in prayer! Do you know what I’m talking about? Are you facing an issue that you have been praying REALLY, REALLY intense for?

Do you have a prayer request that seems to continually make your list day after day? Are you persistent in praying about a situation you are dealing with or are you quick to abandon that prayer and move on?

ILLUSTRATION: A young man went into a drugstore to buy 2 boxes of chocolates. When the pharmacist asked him about the chocolate, the young man said, “I am going over to my girlfriends house for supper tonight to meet her family for the first time. I guess her mom is a real nut-job…so I’m going to give her some candy to try to win her over. If nothing more, maybe she’ll just keep her big mouth shut and chew the delicious candy.” He made his purchases and left.

That evening as he sat down at dinner with his girlfriend’s family, the young man asked if could say the prayer before the meal. He began to pray, and he prayed an earnest, intense prayer that lasted for almost five minutes. When he finished, his girlfriend said, “You never told me you were such a religious person…” He said, “And you never told me your dad was a pharmacist.”

Have you ever faced a crisis that you needed God to INTERVENE? It’s in times such as those that we learn to persistent, perseverance of prayer.

The title of this morning’s message is: “P.U.S.H. Through.” Push is an acronym that stands for - Pray Until Something Happens.

In Luke 18, we are going to study some more of Jesus’ teaching on prayer. And to help them grasp this truth about prayer, he is going to tell them a parable…a parable was an illustration that helps get the point across. Sometimes illustrations are true. Sometimes they are made up. We don’t know about this particular illustration. But the lesson the illustration teaches is ABSOLUTELY TRUE!

Luke 18:1-8

1Now [Jesus] was telling [his disciples] a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart, (side note: When is it ok to be persistent about a prayer request you have? I was talking with someone this past week about praying persistently, and the comment was made: “I think there are some things that you shouldn’t ask God repeatedly about…“ Uh…Jesus tells a parable to show “AT ALL TIMES” it’s ok to be persistent in prayer. There isn’t any prayer requests you have that you shouldn’t be persistent in. verse 2)

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