Summary: An exhortation to pray, praise, and preach
THE BELIEVER’S WORK
Zig Ziglar tells of visiting the Washington monument. As he and his party approached the monument, he heard a guide announcing loudly that there would be a two-hour wait to ride the elevator to the top of the monument. However, with a smile on his face the guide then said, “There is no one waiting to go to the top if you are willing to take the stairs.”
King Duncan, King’s Treasury of Dynamic Humor, Seven Worlds Press, quoted in Bits & Pieces, Vol. T/No. 17, p. 23
I thank God that salvation is by grace. Work has nothing to do with it. Well, our work anyway…His work makes it possible for us to receive this grace.
Tonight I want to share with you three of the works that should be present in the life of every believer.
I. PRAY UNCEASINGLY. EPH 6:18
A) We all know I Thess 5:16 “Pray without ceasing.”
B) Pray always—“Always is a word here in the Greek that has a meaning of continuous but also individuality.”
1) With Prayer—The Greek word for prayer here is “Pros-yoo-khay” which was a word used to identify a place set apart for prayer.
2) With Supplication—a word that means a seeking or asking for something.
3) The word picture is “At all seasons” -- Satan trembles when he sees a believer on his/her knees.
II. PRAISE CONTINUALLY
A) In music and a joyful attitude. Eph 519-20
B) With words from our lips that become a sacrifice to God. Heb 13:15
Everyone needs recognition for his accomplishments, but few people make the need known quite as clearly as the little boy who said to his father: “Let’s play darts. I’ll throw and you say ‘Wonderful!’” Bits & Pieces, December 9, 1993, p. 24
A conference at a church in Omaha, known for its staunch solemn services. People were given helium-filled balloons and told to release them at some point in the service when they felt like expressing the joy in their hearts. Since they weren’t free to say “Hallelujah, Praise the Lord or even amen.” This was suppose to allow them to express their praise in an external way. All through the service balloons ascended, but when it was over 1/3 of the balloons were unreleased. Let your balloon go. –Adapted from Bruce Larson, Luke, p. 43
C) I don’t know about you but I don’t want a stone crying out in my place.
III. PREACH ENDLESSLY Acts 10:42
A) I know, You have heard way too many preachers take this point too far.
Pastor Dave Charlton tells us, "After a worship service at First Baptist
Church in Newcastle, Kentucky, a mother with a fidgety seven-year old boy
told me how she finally got her son to sit still and be quiet. About halfway through the sermon, she leaned over and whispered, ’If you don’t be quiet, Pastor Charlton is going to lose his place and will have to start his sermon all over again!’ It worked."
B) Because of we a story worth telling.
C) We are surrounded by people that need to hear it.
Many residents of Washington remember exactly where they were and what they were doing on the morning Mount St. Helen’s blew wide-open. The shock wave rattled windows for hundreds of miles around.
Prior to the eruption, scientists monitoring the peak didn’t know when it would go off or how big the blast would be. But all the signs of a live volcano were evident. It was just a matter of time.
Local media issued warnings and faithfully reported St. Helen’s vital signs. But as time elapsed and the big eruption did not occur, people became less wary and more bold. Campers, photographers, and others moved in to get a closer look.
Then on May 18, 1980, the mountain that had been dormant since 1857 spewed ash skyward and killed at least thirty people. They had failed to heed warnings, and they died needlessly.
Christine Dallman, The Quiet Hour, December, 1997, February, 1998, p. 77