Summary: This message looks at Cornelius in Acts 10; his heart was a prepared heart because God heard his prayers.

Message ‘The Heart God Uses’ Acts 10:30-43 (NIV)

May 4, 2008

o There was a pastor who had a parrot. All the parrot would say was, “Let’s pray, let’s pray.” The pastor tried to teach him to say other things but to no avail. He learned that one of his deacons had a parrot. The parrot would only say, “Let’s kiss. Let’s kiss.” So the pastor decided to invite the deacon and his parrot over to his house. When the deacon arrived they put the parrots into the same cage to see what would happen. The deacon’s parrot said, “Let’s kiss, let’s kiss.” The pastor’s parrot said, “Thank you, Lord. My prayers have been answered.”

o Here is what we can learn from this passage. First there is great power in prayer. The first heart God uses is a praying heart

1. A praying heart

o Supernatural things happen when we pray

o Here we have Cornelius, a Gentile, who is in prayer before God

o God heard his prayer

o Psalm 65:2 literally says God is a hearer of prayers

o The Bible is full of stories of God’s hand moving when people pray

o Remember this, that we do not always see answers to our prayers right away

o Take the life of Daniel, a godly man, a great example

o In 605 BC Daniel was a young man who was deported to Babylon

o He rose to prominence in a foreign land and served in the Royal Court

o Although his circumstances were dire his character and commitment to God were unchanging – so he kept praying

o He knew and believed that God was absolutely sovereign in his people and life

o God has his eye on you – God is not surprised by anything that your going through

o While interpreting a dream for the King he said “God changes times and seasons; he sets up kings and disposes them”

o Even though the laws of the day said he could not pray to his God he never stopped praying

o Daniel was a man of prayer; a man God could use

o He prayed and was thrown into a lions den for destruction

o Now you don’t get thrown into a lions den of starving lions and come out without a scratch

o Unless of course God has a greater purpose for your life

o He noted the sovereign protection of Yahweh when he told the Darius the Mede ‘My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions (Daniel 6:22)’

o God heard his prayers and sent an angel to help him

o The book of Hebrews says angels are sent ahead to help those receive salvation (Hebrews 1:14)

o As I prepared this message I prayed that God would send a messenger to my family in Southern Ontario

o I prayed for others I have met in this community, that God would send a messenger to them

o I have no doubt that God is moving in our church

o Were praying here every week from 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM, over every row

o Prayer partners are coming together. This is a really exciting and important ministry. Come and join us for prayer at 9:00 AM every Sunday morning

o We have been in prayer for new deacons to help us

o God put it onto the hearts of two men, Mike D. and Gordon D. to come and help us

o When we started praying we did not know it would be them

o Like Solomon were praying ‘Now my God look at us. Listen to the prayers we pray in this place (2nd Chronicles 6:40)”

o This church will rise or fall based on two main factors, godly leadership and prayer

o I know that ‘Satan does not want this church to succeed.’

o Listen to what the Bible says

o Satan prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour

o That is you. He wants to destroy your faith, your belief in Jesus, he wants to destroy this church, his goal is for us to lose heart

o This is how he works. He places doubts in our minds

o ‘You don’t really believe that the Holy Spirit will bring revival to this area, do you?”

o You don’t really believe that God is going to have Bible study groups all over the area, do you?

o You don’t really believe that Calvary can have a thriving prayer ministry, do you?

o Then the next thing were doubting and not praying for the ministry, praying for our lives, our homes are unhappy and Satan has stolen our joy

o Be aware of his strategy. He is a master at it – he divides Christians

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