Summary: We are to stay in constant communication with headquarters when we are in the battles of life.
• SLIDE #1
• Spiritual warfare is something that can drain the life right out of us, spiritual warfare can really take a toll on us. Sometimes there are so many small skirmishes going on that we get drained because we have so many little battles to fight.
• It can be discouraging to know that we are in for a lifetime of battles with the enemy. It is a never ending war that requires us to be in a state of readiness at all times.
• When we put soldiers in Iraq, the military briefs them on who they are fighting, they teach them how to use the protective gear they are given along with a lot of training on how to use the weapons they are given to fight the battle.
• Does it end there? What happens when the soldier is in the midst of the battle, or when he is preparing to do battle? Is he on his own? No! The soldiers are in constant communication with Head Quarters.
• HQ helps develop the battle plan, and assists the soldier when he is in the battle.
• If a group of soldiers are pinned down, they will contact HQ and request assistance or they will ask for air support or possible advice on a change of tactic.
• The last message in our Preparing For Battle series deals with something that is just as important as knowing you enemy and knowing you equipment. Today we are going to look at staying in contact with headquarters.
• When we are preparing to do battle with the enemy or if we are in the middle of the battle, we have been given a wonderful tool, prayer!
• Prayer is something that will help us to win the spiritual battles we fight. Today we are going to look at four aspects of our communication with Headquarters, or put another way, four aspects of our prayer life with God!
• Let us not neglect one of the most important things that will help bring us victory in our spiritual battles!
• The outline for today’s message is based on the four “alls” found in our passage, Ephesians 6:18-19.
• Let us read our passage.
• SLIDE #2
• Ephesians 6:18 - 19 (NASB) 18With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints, 19and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, (Emphasis added)
• The first issue we want to examine in reference to prayer is:
• SLIDE #3
I. WE HAVE SPECIAL COMMUNICATIONS WITH HQ.
All Prayers and Petitions
• The first of the four “alls” we see is “with all prayer and petition.”
• This first “all” gives us the types of communication we are to use.
• There are two different words used here for two different levels of communication with God.
• The word “prayer” is a very general word used to represent cries for help, confession of sin, profession of faith, adoration, thanksgiving, and intercession.
• This word covers our general prayer life. This would be like calling in an air strike to a large area. We are not extremely focused. In other words, we might say a general prayer for the missions we support.
• We might pray a general prayer for a brother or sister in Christ. We might say a prayer of thanksgiving that deals with our attitude of thankfulness in a general sense.
• Prayer is an important part of our armor.
• SLIDE #4
• 1 Timothy 2:8 (NASB), “Therefore I want the men in every place to pray, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and dissension.”
• All over the scriptures we are encouraged to pray. Jesus was a man of prayer.
• For many of us, this is where our prayer life stops. We are kind of vague, we kind of throw up these very broad prayers.
• Now, this type of prayer is part of our prayer life, but there is another type of communication mentioned in this verse, the petition.
• A petition is a specific need prayer; it is a prayer for specific benefits.
• Remember the recall election California held for governor a few years ago?
• One of the first things that had to happen is that enough voters had to sign a petition requesting a recall of the Governor. This was a specific document that dealt with the specific question of recall.
• It did not deal with all the general problems of California, but one question, “Do you want a recall of Governor Davis.”