Gene Cunningham - October 9, 2011

Lesson #1 -- Introduction to Prayer

luk 11:1

If our prayers fail, everything fails.  If you are weak in prayer, you will be weak in everything.  If your prayers are powerful, you will have an impact on eternity.

This request came because of what the disciples observed about Jesus and how He prayed.  Mar 1:35  Prayer was priceless to Christ.  Their conscience was convicted by what they observed, so they asked.

Their request came because of what they observed in John the Baptist.

Their request came from God's providential working in their heart.  He showed them this was necessary for them.

Their request was motivated by their sense of weakness and apparent need to face the time ahead.

When things are going well, our prayer life starts to suffer.

Seven secrets to prevailing prayer:

Others desperately need us to pray for them.  Our nation needs us.

1CO 14:15

Ancient Hebrews - three kinds of prayer: Prayer with words, prayer with groans and sighs, prayer with tears PSA 30:5 PSA 39:12 PSA 56:8 PSA 126:5 heb 5:7

When we fail to pray we are snubbing and rejecting Christ.

praying with understanding: In time of trial, anxiety, and heartache - we instinctively know we need to pray and we do it.  We realize we can't solve our problems.  We sense we need to call our omniscient and omnipotent God to come through on our behalf.  He wants to teach us our need for Him, and His all-sufficiency to meet all our needs and more.  You will make great advances in prayer if you go from the standpoint on "what effect does prayer change me?" (as opposed to circumstances).

Principle of humility and meekness - Psa 9:12 Psa 8:2 mat 11:25-26 

Principle of obedience - coming to Him with a clear conscious and good motives, cleansed by Christ Himself Joh 8:12

Parable of prayer - prodigal son luk 15:11-32  It teaches us the nature of the Father, as well as our need as the younger and older brother, when we pray wrong we may get what we don't want, and when we pray right we get more than we could imagine.  Psa 106:15 ISA 10:15-19 ISA 24:16   The first request was for the gifts, the second request was for the Giver.  You can't run far enough away that when you turn around He'll be running to meet you, again, and again, and again.  The second request was worthy of robes and sandals of service.  Everything He has has been made available to us Eph 1:3  What a shame we write so few checks of faith when we have complete access to His bank account Eph 3:19-20  

Practical applications: all power to hear and give is His, there is not lack or reluctance on His part.  The right request of one single person is just as powerful as 10,000.  We share prayer requests so more of the family can share in the blessing.  God honors that.  God's power to give is only limited by our unbelief and the hardness of our heart.

Prayer in Courtship: 1. Best prayer in praying for a mate is "not my will, Thy will be done."  2. Most necessary prayer is "God be merciful to me the sinner."  3. Fundamental perspective when praying for a mate "Man looks at the outside, but God looks at the heart."  4. A truth that is always true: "When God gives you His choice, it will take growing in grace and truth to unpack the riches He's given you."

Prayer for married people: 1. Pray that He would change you, instead of asking Him to change them 2. Pray He make you more forgiving, instead of asking Him to make them fail less 3. Pray that God will teach you to forgive and love with the love of Christ, and you will be amazed at how great your mate will become

Scripture References: John 8:12, Ephesians 3:19-20, Psalms 39:12, Matthew 11:25-26, Ephesians 1:3, Psalms 30:5, Psalms 8:2, Isaiah 24:16, Mark 1:35, Psalms 9:12, Isaiah 10:15-19, Luke 11:1, Hebrews 5:7, Psalms 106:15, Psalms 126:5, Luke 15:11-32, Psalms 56:8

From Series: "Lord Teach Us to Pray - Uniontown PA 2011"

Uniontown PA Conference October 2011

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