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Summary: All believers should experience an intimate and powerful relationship with God through prayer because of the following 4 benefits. 1. Increased intimacy with God. 2. Wisdom and understanding. 3. Power to experience miracles. 4. Peace and joy amidst

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Can You Hear Me Now?

40 Days on God, Prayer, and Cell Phones

1. The Advertisement: Why You Need It

October 8/9, 2005

Don Jaques

BIG IDEA:

All believers should experience an intimate and powerful relationship with God through prayer because of the following 4 benefits.

1. Increased intimacy with God.

2. Wisdom and understanding.

3. Power to experience miracles.

4. Peace and joy amidst the ups and downs of life.

INTRO:

Show some full page ads for cell phone service. Highlight the “Amazing Features” being advertised to lure customers to their service.

Cell phones are great because they allow us to be in contact with others anywhere, any time. And more and more of us have come to depend on that ability.

But did you know that for many hundreds of years people didn’t have cell phones, but they have had the ability to contact someone anywhere, any time. And not just anyone, but the most powerful, loving, amazing One in the universe. It doesn’t take a cell phone – it takes prayer.

Prayer is that amazing gift that God has given us to communicate with him – but how few of us really use it to its full capacity. Just like these cell-phones, it comes with all sorts of “bells and whistles” – benefits that God wants to give us, but we have to learn how to use them, just like you have to learn how to use that cell phone to get all the features that are yours.

Speaking about prayer, author Oswald Sanders wrote:

Prayer is the most ancient, most universal, and most intensive expression of the religious instinct. It includes the simplest speech of infant lips and the sublime entreaties of older age…. Prayer is indeed the Christian’s vital breath and native air.

But, strange paradox, most of us find it hard to pray. We do not naturally delight in drawing near to God. We sometimes pay lip service to the delight and power of prayer. We call it indispensable, we know the Scriptures call for it. Yet we often fail to pray. (Oswald Sanders, Spiritual Leadership, Chapter 11, p. 85)

I know this can be true in my life. It is far easier to actually say “God bless you” than to actually pray for God to do that. It is simple to say “I’ll be praying for you.” It is work to actually do it.

Perhaps part of the reason why we shy away from prayer is that we don’t fully comprehend the benefits that will come to those of us who pray as a lifestyle. Perhaps we’ve used an old “cell phone” for so long that we find it hard to believe that there are more “features” to our communication with God than we’ve yet experienced.

If you want to trade in your old way of communicating with God for one that is better, let me first share with you “the advertisement”— that is, what you’ll get if you do!

1. Increased intimacy with God.

If you want to get to know someone, you do something very important. You converse with them.

Try this sometime – spend 7 days without speaking to the person closest to you. (OK don’t really try this!) What would happen if you did? Would your relationship get closer or more distant?

Now think of the opposite. What if you were to double the amount of time spent in communication with that person over the next 7 days. What would the natural result of that be? You’d have a closer relationship. You would know more about that other person. They would know more about you. You’d be more likely to think of that person throughout the day. They would be more likely to be thinking of you!


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