Summary: Would you like to learn how to pray effective, powerful prayers? Let’s go to Jesus and say, "Lord, teach us to pray!"
THE SCHOOL OF PRAYER
Dear God: I bet it is very hard for You to love all of everybody in the whole world. There are only four people in our family and I have a hard time loving all of them.
Dear God: I didn’t think orange went with purple until I saw the sunset You made on Tuesday. That was cool.
Dear God: Did You mean for the Giraffe to look like that or was it an accident?
Dear God: Thank You for the baby brother, but what I prayed for was a puppy.
OPENING STORY: The Power of Prayer
I read about a small town that had one church and one bar. Members of the church complained that the bar was giving the community a bad image. And to make matters worse the owner of the bar was an out spoken atheist who didn’t believe in God. The church had tried for years to shut down the bar and finally decided to hold a prayer meeting. The church folks gathered on Saturday night and there was a horrible thunderstorm raging outside and to the delight of the church members, lightning hit that old bar and it burned to the ground. The next morning the sermon in the church was on the power of prayer. But the insurance adjusters promptly notified the bar owner that they were not going to pay for the damages because the fire was an act of God, and that was an exclusion in the policy. The bar owner was furious and he sued the church, claiming that they had conspired with God to destroy his business. But the church denied that they had anything to do with the cause of the fire. The presiding judge opened the trial with theses words: “No matter how this case comes out, one thing is clear. The atheist believes in prayer and the Christians do not.”
(Illustration from Sermon Central dot com).
· Prayer is not just a religious duty we must perform, but prayer really changes things! But if that’s true, then why don’t Christians pray more than they do? And when they do pray, why don’t they see more answers to their prayers? Maybe they simply don’t know how to pray!
IF I WANT TO LEARN HOW TO PRAY, WHO SHOULD I GO TO?
· The Bible says, “Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he ceased, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray.” (Luke 11:1).
HOW DO WE PRAY? (Matthew 6:6-13).
“6 But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. 7 And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8 Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. 9 In this manner, therefore, pray:
THE LORD’S PRAYER:
· Love Relationship: - Our Father in heaven,
- if we don’t pray, we don’t know God’s love or the revelation has grown cold.
- this is a challenge in the 21st century in this fatherless generation!
- personal story: alcoholic dad; I remember being at our first youth conference we hosted in Surrey two years ago, staring out over the crowd of hundreds of young people - the fatherless generation!
(With Christ in the School of Prayer, Andrew Murray).
“The knowledge of God’s Father-love is the first and simplest, but also the last and highest lesson in the school of prayer. Prayer begins in a personal relationship with the living God as well as a personal, conscious fellowship of love with Him.”
FIRST PART: FOR HIS GLORY:
· Worship: - Hallowed be Your name.
· Obedience: - 10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
SECOND PART: FOR OUR GOOD:
· Petitions/Needs: - 11 Give us this day our daily bread.
STORY: Things looked bleak for the children of George Muller’s orphanage at Ashley Downs in England. It was time for breakfast, and there was no food. A small girl whose father was a close friend of Muller was visiting in the home. Muller took her hand and said, "Come and see what our Father will do." In the dining room, long tables were set with empty plates and empty mugs. Not only was there no food in the kitchen, but there was no money in the home’s account. Muller prayed, "Dear Father, we thank Thee for what Thou art going to give us to eat." Immediately, they heard a knock at the door. When they opened it, there stood the local baker. "Mr. Muller," he said, "I couldn’t sleep last night. Somehow I felt you had no bread for breakfast, so I got up at 2 o’clock and baked fresh bread. Here it is." Muller thanked him and gave praise to God. Soon, a second knock was heard. It was the milkman. His cart had broken down in front of the orphanage. He said he would like to give the children the milk so he could empty the cart and repair it. (story from www.sermonillustrations.com).