Thursday, 20 December 2018

9 THINGS YOUR PRAYERS CAN DO FOR YOU NOW!

9 THINGS YOUR PRAYERS CAN DO FOR YOU NOW!

Today, we will look at another important activity in the early church – PRAYER. 
Acts 2:42, says,“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer”.

Other Scriptures: Acts 2:4-3:4
Prayer has innumerable benefits, but let us look at the NINE THINGS YOUR PRAYERS CAN DO FOR YOU NOW, as seen in the book of Acts.

1. BY YOUR PRAYER, THE POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT  IS RELEASED.

Acts 1:14 They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.
The verse occurs before Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was poured down. By Act 2:1, we see that the Holy Spirit was poured down at Pentecost and many were baptized with the Holy Spirit. We often look at the glorious event but do not realize that it was preceded with much prayer. All revivals are birthed in prayer.
Many other scriptures show the Holy Spirit poured down as a result of prayer.
Acts 4:31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.
Acts 8:15-17 When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16 because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.

2. BY PRAYER, YOU ATTRACT LABOURERS FOR THE OF GOD.
Acts 1:24-26 Then they prayed, "Lord, you know everyone’s heart. Show us which of these two you have chosen 25 to take over this apostolic ministry, which Judas left to go where he belongs." 26 Then they cast lots, and the lot fell to Matthias; so he was added to the eleven apostles.
Due to Judas’ all, one more apostle was needed. Finally after much prayer, Matias was chosen as the apostle. Prayer releases workers.
Acts 13:2-5
While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." 3 So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.

Barnabas and Saul were released after prayer.
Acts 14:23-24 Paul and Barnabas appointed elders for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, committed them to the Lord, in whom they had put their trust.
Leaders must only be released after much prayer.
Some people make things happen. Some people see things happen. Some are still asking “What happened ?

3. YOUR PRAYER RELEASES BOLDNESS/POWER INTO YOUR LIFE
Acts 4:31-33 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. 32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all.
Are you ready to overcome the devil ? You need the power of God in your lives.
Prepare and prevent is better than repair and repent

4. YOUR PRAYER BRINGS FOCUS TO YOUR LIFE.
Acts 6:4 and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word."
The background of this scripture was that there were a lot of needs in the church and the apostles had to meet that need. Instead of meeting the need directly and skipping prayer, they prayed and God gave direction on how to meet the needs. You cannot sacrifice your prayer time to meet needs.
Prayer helps us to focus on God and as a result, we will be better able to meet the needs around us.
If we fail to plan, we are planning to fail.
If we fail to pray, we are destined to fail.

5. YOUR PRAYER RELEASES GROWTH IN EVERY AREA.
Acts 6:6-7 They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them. So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.
The rapid growth in the early church was result of prayer.
There are 4 steps to accomplishments. Plan Purposefully. Prepare prayerfully. Proceed positively. Pursue persistently.

6. YOUR PRAYER SPEAKS AS A MEMORIAL BEFORE GOD.

Acts 10:1-4 At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion in what was known as the Italian Regiment. 2 He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly. 3 One day at about three in the afternoon he had a vision. He distinctly saw an angel of God, who came to him and said, "Cornelius!" 4 Cornelius stared at him in fear. "What is it, Lord?" he asked. The angel answered, "Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God.
Cornelius was strong in good works as a result of his prayer life. God commended him for this good works.
His prayers and gifts to the poor became a memorial offering before God.

7. YOUR PRAYER RELEASES HEALING.
Acts 28:8-9 His father was sick in bed, suffering from fever and dysentery. Paul went in to see him and, after prayer, placed his hands on him and healed him.
Acts 9:40 Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, "Tabitha, get up." She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat
Both Paul and Peter used the same method for healing ie Prayer. Healing takes place as a result of prayer.
Prayerlessness is like carrying an umbrella with holes.

8. YOUR PRAYER HELPS YOU TO WITHSTAND HEARTBREAKS AND DISAPPOINTMENTS. 
Acts 20:36-38 When he had said this, he knelt down with all of them and prayed. 37 They all wept as they embraced him and kissed him. 38.

What grieved them most was his statement that they would never see his face again. Then they accompanied him to the ship.
This was the last time the church at Ephesus was going to see Paul. Losing a loved one is always difficult but prayer helps us get through these sorrowful circumstances in life.

9. YOUR PRAYER HELPS US OVERCOME DIFFICULT CIRCUMSTANCES.
Acts 27:29-30 Fearing that we would be dashed against the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern and prayed for daylight. 30 In an attempt to escape from the ship, the sailors let the lifeboat down into the sea, pretending they were going to lower some anchors from the bow.
Paul prayed for daylight as if God could change the sky to help them through the difficult situation here. God can work miracles when we pray. So pray for extra-ordinary things when you are in difficulty.
Prayer creates a banner of protection over our lives.

Conclusion.
There are 2 ways we can pray.
1. Personal Prayer – set aside time everyday to pray
2. Corporate Prayer.  

Make a commitment to prayer.
Some people pray only when they are in trouble. That is why they are in trouble.

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