Tuesday, September 25, 2007

How to Win in Prayers.




How to Win in Prayers.


Text: Luke 18:1-8
A woman had many adversaries she could not overcome, so she went to a judge for help. Several times the judge did nothing, but she persisted. He decided to help her, so that he could have his peace.
1) Mother’s Day with Teary cheeks
1 And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; 2 Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: 3 And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. 4 And he would not for a while:


Exposition:
The situation of the woman and that of women in those days was tough. In Israel in those days, the woman was relegated to a limited role after the husband and the son. The worst was the widow because at this time, she did not more have any defense. The son was important because it was mainly a subsidiary agriculture that was practiced, and the woman was not pruned to that. She could not tend the sheep well, do the farm work or fight wars. The number of widows too was very high because of the high rate of wars that the men got involved in. As such, being a widow was more or less a more destitute position. Having an unanswered prayer for this woman and other women was common.


Application:


Like the widow, you have issues you have prayed and prayed and taken to the right person, but he does not care about you. Yeah, you keep going there and going there, but he is not minding you. Would you give up? The woman never gave up. She persisted. Do you realize by your strength you can do nothing? Do you realize it is neither by power nor by might but by the Spirit of God alone? Then persist in prayer it shall be well with you. It may tarry, but it shall come to pass. The Great Judge will give you a favorable ruling. Oh yeah, be like the boxer who though knocked down is not knocked out. He gets up at the ninth count and knocks out his opponent. Will you give up? You are a conqueror. Oh yeah, you are an overcomer. Will you give up? Look at you and say “I am an overcomer, a conqueror and I shall make it. I was born in Christ to win!


Illustration:
When we were kids, we were going to another village to watch a game. We came to where they were loading vehicles, and the bus was full. We begged for sometime, but they refused. So we decided to walk. But our little female friend refused that she will not go because she will not be able to walk the distance. She stayed behind and kept begging and begging. As she kept begging, the passengers asked the driver to just create space for the little girl, but he refused. The other passengers then threatened they too were going down. He decided to carry the girl. While we were on our way, night was falling, we got scared and ran back home. She made it to the game, but we could not make it. Her persistence paid off. She was persistent because she knew there was no other way out for her. By her strength, she could do nothing.


2) A goal to conquer
But afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; 5Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. 6 And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith.


Exposition:
The main word /continual/ /eis/ (indicating the point reached) /tello/ (purpose or result) and weary/hupōpiazō/ to hit under the eye. Folks the lady had a point to reach- the judge and a purpose to attain- favorable verdict for her situation. Yes she did.


Application:
Without a vision, my people perish. Do you have a vision in life? Do you have a purpose in what you are doing? Then pursue it. The word wear out is synonymous to a boxer hitting the opponent on the under eye. Yes the lady kept “hitting” the judge underneath the eyelids by frequently going there. So, he lost the battle of resistance while she won the battle of persistence. What strength and enthusiasm are you applying in achieving that purpose for God? Her persistence though physical is a spiritual persistence for us. This reminds me of the woman with issue of blood. She has suffered for more than 12 years then said to herself, “ If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole”. But then, she had this throng in front of her. She forced her way through, touched the hem of Jesus’ garment and her 12 years story became history and lesson for us today. You have come a long way. Will you give up? You are close to reaching your goal, please don’t give up. Oh no no no don’t give up. Your miracle is on the way. Look unto Jesus; the author and finisher of our faith.


Illustration:
Beth Anne DeCiantis' attempted to qualify for the 1992 Olympic Trials marathon. A female runner must complete the 26 mile, 385 yard race in less than two hours, forty-five minutes to compete at the Olympic Trials. Beth started strong but began having trouble around mile 23. She reached the final straight-away at 2:43, with just two minutes left to qualify. Two hundred yards from the finish, she stumbled and fell. Dazed, she stayed down for 20 seconds. The crowd yelled, "Get up!" The clock was ticking - 2:44, less than a minute to go. Beth Anne staggered to her feet and began walking. Five yards short of the finish, with ten seconds to go, she fell again. She began to crawl, the crowd cheering her on, and crossed the finish line on her hands and knees. Her time? Two hours, 44 minutes, 57 seconds.<
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3) Turn on the heat and the judge’s seat gets hot.


7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? 8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? (Luke 18:1-8)


Exposition:
The main word /eklectos/ favorite or chosen and makrŏthumĕō patiently endures. God will surely avenge his elect. Why avenge yourself. The elect here means favorite and we are made God’s favorite by the blood of Jesus that redeems us. And this elect patiently endures what they go through.


Application:
What we are to God and how he treats us. The Bible says in Isaiah 40:31, "but those who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."
This is an allusion to the indefatigable nature of the eagle. It renews its youth by shedding its feathers that enables it to fly higher, stronger and faster. When we cast our cares to the Lord he gives us rest and we become lighter as if we have just shredded our feathers like the eagle does. It helps us to face life with much hope and anticipation. To arrive at this conclusion I had to do some horizontal thinking by considering Psalm 103:5 too and the life history of an eagle.


Illustration:
John Adams was a leader in the American Revolution and wrote the influential tracts "Thoughts on Government and Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America." He saw no reason his eldest son, born in 1767, shouldn't attain equal greatness. Adams set a rigorous course of study for young John, assigning him, for example, to read Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War in the original Greek, at age 10. Morally stern, Adams also admonished his son to make "a good account" of himself, and continued to hector him well into his adulthood. "You come into life with advantages which will disgrace you if your success is mediocre," Adams wrote to the 27-year-old JQA in 1794. "If you do not rise to the head not only of your profession but of your country, it will be owing to your own Laziness, Slovenliness and Obstinacy." (http://slate.msn.com/id/32241/)


Therefore, my friends we can achieve anything we set our minds on if we persist in prayers. The fact that God does not answer today does not mean he will not answer tomorrow. We just have to persist and hold him at His word. He will never fail you. God bless you.



Until then, persist in prayers and it shall be well.



Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk

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