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"Pray Like This" - 22m:23s

Series: The Upside Down Kingdom

Scripture Reading: Matthew 6:9-13 ;   Sermon Series "The Upside Down Kingdom".

Prayer - What’s It For?  

I once heard a sermon on prayer in which the preacher asked the audience what prayer  is. He answered his own question by saying, “Prayer is Christians asking God for  stuff.” I thought, “Well, that sounds kind of shallow.” Then I thought, “What if it’s  true?”

Even if it sounds shallow to say it aloud, is there some truth to that description of  prayer? If I’m not careful, my prayers can devolve into the same - me asking God for  stuff: health, safety, healing, peace, wisdom, better marriage, more children, etc. I  wonder what God hears as He listens to our prayers...

There has to be something more. There’s a famous novel by Alexander Solzhenitsyn  entitled, A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich. In it, Alexander brings to life the horrors  of a Soviet prison camp. In one particular section, the main character, Ivan,is praying  when a fellow prisoner notices him. “Prayers won’t help you get out of here any faster,”  he said. Ivan opened his eyes and answered. “I do not pray to get out of prison, but to do the will of God.”  One might argue that unanswered prayers got Ivan into prison. Maybe it was God’s will. Maybe God didn’t answer Ivan’s prayers for safety and health. One could  theorize all day about the cause of his imprisonment. What strikes me is the reason for  Ivan’s prayer. It wasn’t to get out, but to be submissive. What a perspective! I suspect  that God would answer that kind of prayer. Join us as we uncover what  Jesus has to say about prayer.

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