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Priority Prayer Requests - Gods Will

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“Priority Prayer Requests: God’s Will” Col 1:9

-          When I was in high school, I had a friend who was a little more spoiled than I was and he always looked the part without actually playing the part

-          When we got into Biking, he got the best mountain bike, all the equipment, clothing, magazines….but he really didn’t Bike all that much

-          Same thing with guitar, same thing with tennis, same thing with four by four trucking

-          He looked a whole like he was a whole lot more serious than he really actually was

-          The Apostle Paul was a man of prayer, He didn’t just tell other people to pray, or teach people about prayer……..he actually prayed and he did so ferverently…..we have many of his prayers recorded in the New Testament

-          Jesus prayed…..the Son of God praying to His Father…….ultimate example for us, in fact the prayer life of Jesus was so noticeable and so wonderful that His disciples actually came to Him one day and said “Teach us to pray”

-          | I can tell you that God is alive because I talked with him this morning.Billy Graham (1918– )  |

There are many examples of men and women who were committed to prayer

-          In Colossians 1:9-12, Paul prays for the church in Coloasse, he hasn’t met them but he is praying for them, He’s in prison but he is still thinking of others so he prays for them……talk about a man of prayer

-          I want to cover this prayer very slowly, because I think this prayer shows us how to pray, the importance of prayer and those things which really are important for Christians

I.                     Priorities in Prayer (1:9)

A.        Some Basics for Prayer (9a)

·         WHO we pray to

Ø          Verse 3 tells us that Paul was praying to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ

Ø          Paul was praying to the one true God of Heaven and Earth, the one true God who has made it possible for us to have a relationship with Himself through the work of Jesus at the cross

Ø          Intelligent conversation with the one true, all powerful, all knowing, all present God, the creator of this universe

Ø          Prayer is not a mystical sort of thing where a person is just blabbing up words in hope that some force or god up there will get wind of the prayer…..conversation to the one true God

Ø          Prayer is not an incantation, or some form of transcendental meditation, that is not praying to anyone

Ø          Prayer should not be done frivolously or flippantly, we need to remember exactly Who we are speaking too……….The Good Lord, The man upstairs,

Ø          Prayer can become so routine and so ordinary that we forget…..the Creator of this Universe is on the other side of this conversation!  Wo!

Ø          We communicate with a God who hears us, we pray to Him!

  I was tucking our preschooler in for the night when she asked if she could pray. Delighted, I told her it was a great idea to talk to Jesus. As she began praying, her words kept getting softer and softer until only her lips were moving. Then she said "Amen."    "Honey," I said, giving her a hug, "I didn't hear a word you said."    "That's okay, Mama," she responded. "I wasn't talking to you." 

Ø          The God of the universe has time for you, you don’t have to pry your way in to pray


·         Who we pray for

Ø          Paul’s example….he is praying for the Colossians, he prayed for the Philippians, Ephesians, Romans, Thessalonians, for individuals, for the church in general

Ø          Paul prayed for people he knew, people that he didn’t know……He prayed for people

Ø          And so we should be praying for people…….prayer has a tremendous impact on people

Ø          You can pray for the salvation of a friend…..you can pray for the spiritual growth of another brother or sister in Christ, you can pray blessings into the lives of other Christians

Ø          Notice the beginning of verse 9, For this reason we do not cease to pray, since the day we heard, we do not cease to pray

Ø          What reason?  What had they heard?  That the gospel had come into the city of Coloasse and was doing a fantastic work changing their lives…..doing good things

Ø          We heard that you are doing great, that the gospel is working a miracle in you, and since you are doing so well and the gospel is bearing so much fruit we really need to pray for you

Ø          Paul was praying for a church that was doing well spiritually…..now they are in danger from false prophets and false messages that are trying to undermine their faith, and Paul will deal with those issues

Ø          Praying for folks that are doing well…….that is something that we usually do not do

Ø          We usually pray for people when things are not going well, when people are in some kind of a crisis

Ø          In fact, a crisis is what usually gets people on prayer lists, not when things are going ok

Ø          Imagine getting a prayer request on our prayer chain here at the church……we really need to be praying for Tom, He just got a brand new job that should bless him tremendously, he really needs our prayers!

Ø          Preventative prayer…….praying before the crisis, sickness of our children

Ø          Some of the biggest attacks from satan come after a believer has experienced and incredible blessing…..pray for those who are doing well

Ø          Praying for churches and church leaders who are being used by the Lord even when it seems like things are going ok because Satan wants to destroy people when things are going well

·         When we pray

Ø          We do not cease to pray for you…….that is we are habitually, continually, consistently praying for you, you are in our constant prayers

Ø          What exactly does this mean?

Ø          5 times in Paul’s letters he either tells folks that he is praying for them without ceasing or teaches us to pray without ceasing

Ø          Does this mean that we must walk around all day with our heads bowed, eyes closed, hands folded, always verbalizing our prayers!

Ø          No, you could get seriously hurt if you had your eyes closed and head bowed all day long

Ø          It is an attitude……..John MacArthur calls this having a true God consciousness, realizing that we are in the presence of God all day long and bringing the Lord into every situation

Ø          Every circumstance and situation prompts you to prayer……hear some good news, you thank the Lord, hear some bad news pray for them

Ø          Hearing sirens, “Lord please be with whoever is hurt” it is living your life in a communion with the Lord

Ø          Being very aware of people as well, what they saying, doing, what troubles they are struggling with

Ø          A person like that will be used so mightily by the Lord

An intercessor means one who is in such vital contact with God and with his fellowmen that he is like a live wire closing the gap between the saving power of God and the sinful men who have been cut off from that power.Hannah Hurnard (1905–1990) 

·         How to pray

Ø          You are going to notice that Paul’s prayer requests are for spiritual needs, not physical needs

Ø          Praying for knowledge of God’s will, fruitful Christian living, spiritual power….spiritual qualities and  requests

Ø          He doesn’t pray that they would get a new building, better chairs, or that everyone in the church would be healed of physical sickness, or that everyone would become rich

Ø          He prays for spiritual qualities……this is completely foreign to us, it really is

Ø          So much of prayer requests are directed toward the physical and material issues of life, not the spiritual

Ø          Imagine getting this prayer down the prayer chain!

Ø          Folks, it is ok to pray for material and physical needs, we are told to in scripture, but the greatest needs are spiritual

Ø          Often times the root of many physical and material hardships lies in lack of spiritual realities…….

Ø          Marriages in trouble because of spiritual problems

Ø          Financial problems because of spiritual problems

Ø          Sometimes in praying for just the physical needs we are only praying for symptoms of the real problem which is a spiritual one

Ø          Would you go to a doctor who only treated the symptoms and failed to care about diagnosing the problem?

Ø          And even in genuine trials and tribulations, God is working on us spiritually, and it is the spiritual blessings that will last forever

B.         Request for them to know God’s will (9b)

·         Key words

·         An expert on God’s will

·          

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