Summary: Why aren’t we praying as much? We will pray more if we come to truly know WHO the Lord is and WHAT He has to offer us.
Campus Crusade for Christ’s founder Bill Bright tells the story of “a man who traveled to a certain city one cold morning. As he arrived at his hotel, he noticed that the clerks, the guests—everyone—were barefoot.
In the coffee shop, he noticed a fellow at a nearby table and asked, ‘Why aren’t you wearing shoes? Don’t you know about shoes?’
‘Of course, I know about shoes,’ the patron replied.
‘Then why don’t you wear them? The visitor asked. ‘Ah, that is the question,’ the patron returned. ‘Why don’t I wear shoes?’
“After breakfast, the visitor walked out of the hotel and into the snow. Again, every person he saw was barefoot. Curious, he asked a passerby, ‘Why doesn’t anyone here wear shoes? Don’t you know that they protect the feet from cold?’
The passerby said, ‘We know about shoes. See that building? It’s a shoe factory. We are so proud of the plant that we gather there every week to hear the man in charge tell us how wonderful shoes are.’
‘Then why don’t you wear shoes?’ the visitor persisted. ‘Ah, that is the question,’ the passerby replied. ‘Why don’t we wear shoes?’
Bill Bright says, “When it comes to prayer, many Christians are like the people in that city. They know about prayer, they believe in its power, they frequently hear sermons on the subject, but it is not a vital part of their lives.”
Why aren’t we praying as much?
This woman would not have received anything from Jesus, until she saw TWO facts:
(1) who really is this man
(2) what really can this man offer
Jesus made TWO very important comments to this woman:
(1) John 4:10 Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and WHO it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."
• You do not know – I have in my hands the key to life and happiness. If you had known, you would have asked Me!
• Why didn’t we pray more – perhaps we are not fully convinced that Jesus is the One we really need. And until something happens - usually bad events – only then are we forced to turn to Him and cry for help.
• We do not have full FAITH in the WHO, and therefore we did not ask Him.
(2) John 4:13-14 Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."
• What you have is a well. I can offer you a spring. What you have is temporary; I can offer you something permanent, and eternal..
• What the Lord give us is qualitatively different – not just life, but an abundant life; not just peace, but peace that surpasses our understanding; not just happiness but unspeakable joy; and unwavering hope!
• We did not ask from Him because we are not fully convinced that Jesus can offer us the best. Somehow we fear that He may spoil our plans and alter our choices.
• We do not have complete faith that WHAT He has to offer us.
IF YOU KNEW…
Until we are fully convinced of these two facts, we would not have asked Jesus for anything.
• That’s why God helps us sometimes, through trials and challenges.
• Experiences that cause us to take a look at Him and realize again what only He can offer us.
• When we are driven to a corner, by circumstances. When we’re forced into a dead end by problems beyond us – only then do we look up and PRAY, and begin to appreciate Him for who He is and what He can do.
This woman has a great need, and that’s not water.
• She lived a miserable life – five husbands left her (we do not know the causes). To be deserted by five friends is a sad thing, so you can imagine having 5 marriages and they all did not end well.
• She needs a life! A decent life. That’s what Jesus was so keen to give her – a new life!
• She needed happiness, fulfillment in life, some sense of hope and meaning. Not water. God can bless her with that anytime, He owns the well!
But she has to overcome her ignorance – we too have to overcome such ignorance today if we want a blessed life – she needs to know WHO is this man, and WHAT He can offer her.
We thank God for what Jesus did.
• She started off calling Him SIR, and then got to know Him as a PROPHET, and eventually the MESSIAH.