Summary: Prayer is the tool that connects us to the power of God. We do not tap it for many reasons.
Sept 7 – Living the Supernatural Life – Part 3 - Untapped Power
Last week something remarkable happened during our worship service. We learned about the power of calling upon God to intervene in situations – because God has limited Himself in this world to the prayers of His people. Then, we felt the Lord tell us to pray that Hurricane Gustav, a category 4 storm with winds of 150 mph, that had killed 80 people in the Caribbean, would be “squashed.” So many of you joined in and with faith building prayers, asked God to intervene and prevent a disaster.
I know that sounds pretty strange. I envisioned a crowd of people calling out, “squash that storm!” Yet at 9:20 am on Monday, a reporter for the Weather Channel, who was standing in the path of the storm outside of New Orleans stated, “it is remarkable, this storm had a powerfully well defined eye over Cuba and it is as if its eye has collapsed. The power has come out of this storm.” That sounds like an answer to our church’s corporate prayer.
Last week when the service was over, Joe Fuger came up to me and shared an insight that literally blew me away. He said that he had always seen prayer as a tool to “ask God for something we want and hope He gives it to us.” He then added, “now he saw prayer as a means of bringing what God already wants into our earthly realm and lives.
The picture became clear for me as well. It was as if we thought we were children begging our Father for a handout and suddenly we had realized that we are representatives called to distribute God’s gifts to others.
The implication is world changing in its possibilities! We are to pray in order to release what God already wants to do in our world!
We don’t name and claim it…that isn’t God’s method. We are distributors of God’s grace, of what He has accomplished, and prayer is how we make that distribution happen!
We have been discussing living the supernatural life. We have talked about barriers to it, and we have been learning how we can actively allow the supernatural life of Jesus Christ to flow through us! It boils down to prayer.
Prayer is releasing God’s desires and intentions into the earth “as it is in heaven.”
GOD wants people saved. God wants people set free from slavery to addictions. God desires that people come to know His love.
But it isn’t happening because we aren’t praying!
Prayer is the vital link for the Christian to experience the supernatural life on a regular basis.
If you aren’t experiencing the supernatural life, if you aren’t seeing God’s supernatural hand in your life, then it may well be that you aren’t praying…or maybe you aren’t in a relationship with God at all.
This morning I want to look at what happens when the church, the corporate body of believers gathers together to pray and experience the supernatural power of God. Last week we saw what happened when we prayed together, corporately, for God to intervene in a major hurricane that had the name “staff of God.” God called us to stand in the gap, and as a body of believers, we did so. And God acted.
There is a lot of debate about drilling for oil right now. There is more untapped energy under the ground that we have tapped into yet. As long as it lays untouched, uncovered and undiscovered, it is only potential power.
I want to say, Christians have a drilling problem. We have a great potential power that we haven’t tapped. And as a result, (not notes, but ppt) we have a power shortage in the church!
Acts 12: “1 Now about that time Herod the king laid hands on some who belonged to the church in order to mistreat them. 2 And he had James the brother of John put to death with a sword. 3 When he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter also. Now it was during the days of Unleavened Bread. 4 When he had seized him, he put him in prison, delivering him to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending after the Passover to bring him out before the people. 5 So Peter was kept in the prison, but prayer for him was being made fervently by the church to God.”
James was killed and since it caused a boost in his approval rating in the polls, Herod decided to make Peter his next victim.
I don’t know whether the church prayed earnestly for James…maybe they were caught off guard, but they weren’t about to let Peter die without interceding. They gathered together (we know that by the following verses) and prayed for Peter’s release.