Secret Sauce Part 5
We’re on this series called the secret sauce of prayer and fasting and I hope it’s been ministering to you and encouraging you. We just finished, Tuesday, our 21 days of prayer and fasting to start the year and we are excited about what God is going to do in your life as well as in the churches life moving forward. So just because we’re done fasting doesn’t mean we’re done praying. So we’re going on to a new era, a new timeframe, for now. We’re praying and feasting instead of praying and fasting. So we’re excited about that part. So we’re looking forward to today. When you came in, you got a worship guide, and there are sermon notes available for you there. You can pull those out and follow along if you’d like, or your version Bible app users for your phone or your electronic device from, Mt. Carmel Church.
You can use those to get the sermon notes if you’ve got your Bible though. Every time we open the Bible, we believe God’s got something to say to us and that he wants to talk to us. So we get pumped and we get excited up in here to hear from God. So if you got them today, open them up to Luke chapter 18. Whew! Yes, sir. Yes, man. Luke chapter 18 in secret sauce. Put some sauce on this message today in the name of Jesus. We’ve been talking about prayer and giving you the basic principles of establishing a prayer life. How many know we need a prayer life? So we’ve been skimming some basic principles on how to do that. The reason we’re doing this because we don’t want you to be intimidated by prayer. We don’t want you to talk yourself out of it just to say, “I can’t do that.”
Set a Time and a Place
That’s for spiritual people. I’m just me. Guess what? We all deal with difficulties and challenges in praying. Most people assume that everybody else prays. You might think that I just say, “Hey God, we just have this online thing.” We just talk. It’s just so easy. There are times I struggle in prayer, so I just want to encourage you and that we’ll give you two principles that we’ve talked about. One was set a time and a place. Hopefully, you’re setting a time and place for your prayer life because you may know this prayer won’t happen on accident. God’s never going to interrupt you scanning through your Instagram feed to make you pray. We have to set a time. Lee Cockerell is the former executive vice president of Walt Disney World. He once managed 40,000 employees and over 1 million customers per week. He said this, “What gets scheduled gets done.”
Pray Word-Based Prayers
What’s going to get done in our life? What we set a schedule for. I hear people say,” I just don’t have time to pray.” We’ve got time for other stuff. We will have time to pray when we schedule prayer. This is what time I meet God, Mt. Carmel Church. This is where I meet him, so we schedule it. It’s on our calendar. Nothing else can interrupt that. This is my 15 minutes. This is for 30 minutes. This is my hour. You put on the calendar and say, this is me and God. I’m not available in this timeframe. That’s how you do it. Set a time and place. Number two we talked about what do. What we pray first was when and where. And two is what we pray word-based prayers. We talked about praying the word of God. “I don’t know what to pray, Chad. I don’t know what to say.”
God’s Word doesn’t return to him Void
Sometimes I don’t either. So you do a couple of things. You pray in the spirit or you can just pray the word of God back to him. Isaiah 55 I give you this scripture. 10-11, for as the rain comes down, the snow from heaven and doesn’t return there, but waters the earth and makes it bring forth and bring forth and bud that it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater. So shall my word be. This is God talking that goes forth from his mouth. It shall not return to Him void. How has God’s word returned to him from our mouth? So when I’m declaring God’s word back to him, I’m returning his word to him. It will not come back to him empty, void or worthless. It’s talking about the word.
We Pray Bold
It shall accomplish what I please and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. What is going to do the work in our life? It is God’s word. My desires don’t move God, his word, moves him. All right. That was the difference, we’d already talked about that. Number three, talk about time and place where then we talked about what? Then we’re talking about how we’re going to finish this up. How? Talking about praying. Bold, praying and believing. We are praying bold and praying believing. Today we’re going to talk about bold. We’re going to finish up praying bold. I thought I may have said that. Hey, next week we’ll talk about praying and believing. So if you came in expecting that, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to lie. I just felt like there were some things that God wanted me to bring out about praying bold. Next week though, we’re going to pray about believing, Mt. Carmel Church. That is everything.
We’ll spend two weeks on that. That’s my goal. We’ll see what happens with that. Sometimes I have great goals that don’t come to pass, but anyway, we’re talking about praying bold, so pray boldly. Luke 18, you found that? Yep. Let’s go ahead. Let’s read this, that he spoke a parable to them. He is Jesus that men always ought to pray. Women also know we’re gender equity here. Equal opportunity. Men and women always ought to pray and not lose heart. Saying there was in a certain city, a judge who did not fear God and regard man. Now there was a widow in that city and she came to him saying, get justice for me from my adversary and he would not for a while, but afterward he said within himself, though, I do not fear God nor regard man yet because this widow troubles me.
I will have been chirped less by her continual coming. She wearies me. Then the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge said. Pay attention and shall God not avenge his elect to cry out day and night to him. Though he bears long with him, I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the son of man comes, will He find faith on the earth? I want to pray. Father, I just thank you for your word that is truly a lamp to our feet and light to our path. I thank you, Lord, that your word gives us life and strength. So I pray Holy Spirit, that you will come and just open it up to us. I pray for clear communication, clear understanding. And Lord, I pray that you will bring regulatory understanding to things that we don’t even know about. Bring them to life.
So, Lord, I give you praise for everything that happens today. Let Jesus be lifted and everybody is drawn close to you. It’s in Jesus’ name we pray. Somebody say amen. All right, now notice that this is a parable. The parable is just a short moral story with a symbolic meaning. So Jesus tells this parable. Now, it’s important to know about the Bible. Its chapter 18 but the Bible wasn’t written in chapters, it was just a letter by Luke. So chapter 18 goes along with chapter 17 so when Jesus said this parable, it’s attached or it’s continuing a parable. It’s continuing illustration from 17. Now when you have time read through chapter 17. It is talking about the return of Christ. So when you’re praying about Jesus returning, anybody glad that Jesus is going to return someday and take us back to heaven with him Mt. Carmel Church?
How Often and How Long should we Pray?
I’m pumped about that, a lot more than you are right now. But anyway, it’s a continuing illustration of that and those. So he says, men ought always to pray. So now he’s talking about prayer. So this whole parable is dealing on the subject of prayer. Jesus answers two important questions about prayer and I want you to get these today. Jot these down or you’ve got them. They’re in your sermon notes. These two important questions about prayer. Number one, how often should we pray and how long should we pray. How often and how long, he answers him there. In verse one he says, men always ought to pray and not lose heart. Let’s look at the first one. How often should we pray? Men always, everybody says always, ought to pray. The first one. How often is always, how often should you and I pray? Always. This speaks to frequency, habit, consistency.
If we’re going to get a prayer life, if we’re going to talk to God, here’s what we have to do. Here’s how often we pray. Always. How often do you pray? Always, we pray. Always means we’ve got to have some frequency to it guys. There’s some consistency to it. Now when I say always, it doesn’t mean that we never do anything but prayer. It’s not like we’re shutting ourselves up in her in a room and we’re just praying all the time. That word always just means on every occasion or at all times. So it doesn’t mean that we’re praying all the time. It just means we pray on every occasion. We pray all the time. We pray about everything. There’s some people who are intimidated to pray, like there are certain things I should pray about and certain things I shouldn’t bother God with. I mean has anyone ever heard somebody say, “You know what, God’s got bigger things to deal with than my issue.”
Pray Without Ceasing
Like we think God doesn’t care about little ole you or what you’re walking through. We pray about everything. Always pray. I don’t care how big or how little, he’s not just concerned about world peace. He’s not just concerned about these things, he’s also concerned about you and what’s going on with you and your family at work, at school, that friend, it doesn’t matter. He cares about everything. So pray always. Everybody says always. I’m always going to pray. First Thessalonians chapter 5 says this. Rejoice always. Pray without what? Without, ceasing in everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. So we’re going to pray without ceasing. We’re going to pray all the time. Prayer is just talking to God, so we need to pray before you take that test at school, pray about everything. Pray before you make that presentation at work. Pray before that meeting with your boss. Pray before that meeting with your staff. Pray about everything. Pray before your basketball game, your volleyball game, or your softball game, whatever sport, pray before everything. Pray before you send that text message.
Why can we all connect on that one and we don’t always connect on the other? Pray before you send that email, pray before you pick up that phone and give them a piece of your mind. Pray before you go up and talk to that teacher or that coach. How many other illustrations do you need to connect with this? We need to pray about everything, but we think I can handle this one. God, you just set down. How many times have we done that? Oh, we’ve all done it. God, I don’t want to bother you with this petty thing. I’ve got this one under control. Honey, come here. A few things I want to tell you. Pray before you talk to your spouse. Yeah, we just received. So we are praying always. Not only how many, if you can fill up with one thing, but it’ll also keep other things from getting in.
So praying always takes up space that might be occupied by something else. Philippians 4: 6-7 says this, be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication with Thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. We’re talking about praying. Always notice what he says. Be anxious for nothing but pray about everything. Two things about being anxious for nothing. We need to know, be anxious for nothing. That sentence could also read, become anxious for nothing. Now the word anxious means apprehension, anxiety, and worry. What we need to understand is God is not expecting us to not feel anxious, or not feel worried. He just says, don’t become that. This is a big difference. Sometimes we have this false perception. I’m supposed to walk through life and never feel fear, Mt. Carmel Church.
Just because you feel Fear, doesn’t mean you should be Afraid
The Bible never tells me to feel fear. It says, don’t be afraid. There’s one thing to feel anxiety. There’s nothing to become anxious to give into where now my identity is wrapped up in that thing that I’m going to feel worried about. But we have to realize that just because I feel it, it doesn’t mean we have become it. Become anxious for nothing. Don’t become that. Don’t let it define you. There are significant things in our society that we deal with that are real anxiety disorders. It happens. It’s a real thing in our society. I’ll give you some statistics on it. According to the anxiety and depression association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the US affecting 40 million adults in the US age, 18 or older or 18% of the population dealing with panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorders. Be careful because we start labeling certain things in society and culture and we start throwing them out like catchphrases or colloquialisms. One might be like this. You may be a person that you like things neat and tidy and a certain way and you start saying, well I just have obsessive-compulsive. You’re not necessarily obsessive-compulsive. You don’t have to have a disorder to have a habit, Mt. Carmel Church.
I don’t have to have a disorder to have a behavior. This is just how God made me. I’m not going to claim I have an obsessive-compulsive disorder. I’m just going to say this is the way God made me. I just don’t like junk right there on the floor. Pick that up. It’s driving me nuts. You know it’s okay. But sometimes we take them because I can’t be something. I can’t feel it. So I can’t ever be afraid. But, somebody is talking about when he says, be anxious for nothing. It doesn’t mean never be anxious about anything. It doesn’t mean we don’t do anything. Be anxious for nothing. It doesn’t mean we simply don’t do things. How many have ever had somebody to tell you this? You’re dealing with something. They’re totally detached from it. They have no skin in the game whatsoever. They’re not dealing with that at all, Mt. Carmel Church.
They’re not related to it. They’re not connected to it. It’s driving you crazy and they came up to you and they have had the audacity to say, well, just don’t worry about it. You just want to punch them in the mouth. They said, don’t worry about it. Be anxious for nothing is not the answer. The answer is in the next part of the verse. See, it’s not anxious for nothing, like just don’t worry about it. Like, take the worry out of your life. No, it’s not just stop worrying. It’s what are you doing instead? Don’t tell someone to stop worrying. Tell them to do something instead of worrying. When I say, don’t worry, that’s just pointing out the problem. Pointing out the problem never helps anybody bring a solution to the table. What do you see? Stop worrying about it. Okay, great Mt. Carmel Church.
Filling up with Prayer Leaves less room for Anxiety
You don’t get if you just get all worked up because someone is just saying you need to stop doing something and they’re not attached to it at all. They need to say, “Hey, I know you’re worried about it. I know you’re dealing with that. Try this, fill up with that and when I fill up because of notice what it says. What’s the next thing it says? In everything by prayer and with Thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God within everything. So instead of being anxious, if I pray about everything now I fill up on prayer. I fill up on God, I fill up on what he says. That leaves less room for anxiety to come into my life. So don’t just say, “Don’t worry about it.” Say, “Pray more.” We need to worry less and pray more. Sometimes we think if we will worry about it and worry and worry and worry.
Stop calling yourself a worrywart. Who wants to be associated with a wart anyway? Just be connected with that. So pray more, worry less. That’s what he’s saying. He says, “Be anxious for nothing.” And look at what happens. The peace of God, which passes, surpasses all understanding will guard our hearts and mind. Does anybody want more peace than you? And you want less anxiety than we pray always in everything. Praying always can help keep us from becoming. Becoming anxious doesn’t mean I won’t feel it. I’m just not going to become it. So how often we pray? Always. How often do we pray? We pray always. Number two, how long? How long do we pray? Jesus is answering this there in verse two. Men always ought to pray and not lose. All right? Make sure everybody’s paying attention. Men always ought to pray and not lose heart.
What does that mean? The word loses heart. There’s a Greek word that means to become discouraged or disheartened to lose motivation or give up. He says, don’t give up. Don’t lose your motivation. Don’t get discouraged. Don’t be disheartened. So I asked the question after I’ve read the verse, why do we get discouraged and give up about anything in life? You think about it, why? What are things in your life? Why would we give up? Why would we lose heart? Why would we get discouraged? Most of the time and some of the things I came up is because we’re not seeing the results we want. Nothing’s changing, right? I’m trying this, I’m doing this. They said, if I ate these things and didn’t eat these things and did that, then I would start losing weight, but I’m not seeing the results. So give me a blizzard right now or what?
The Presence of a Thought doesn’t mean we have to Receive it
I don’t know what it is for you. I’ve tried this. I’m trying to, you said, you know, I was told that if I act this way and treat him this way, then things would work out and my marriage. But I’ve been doing it and doing it and doing it and he’s not changing or she’s not changing. When do we get discouraged? When do we give up? When we’re not seeing the results we want to see. Am I right? But God says, “Don’t lose heart.” Wow. How do I not lose heart when it’s not changing? It’s not moving. It’s not shifting. The word discourage means discourage to deprive of courage. Here’s what I believe the enemy wants to do. He wants to take our courage and remove it out of our hearts. He wants to distance your courage. We’ve all got courage. How do we get discouraged? How do we become discouraged? We’re going to feel discouraged. I feel discouraged weekly after I preach. I do three times per week. I’d feel the feeling of discouragement. It will come as soon as I get off the stage. It’s just his strategy. I know what’s going to happen, but now whether I become discouraged or not, it’s totally my choice to agree with that thought or not agree with that thought. The presence of thought does not mean we have to receive it, Mt. Carmel Church.
Yeah, so he said he wants us to become discouraged. Now give me a scripture. Joshua chapter 1. He’s getting ready to go into the Promised Land, and getting ready to possess everything that God has for him, and here’s what God tells Joshua three times over four verses you think he would get the message. Verse six, be strong. Be strong. You know this how he said, be anxious for nothing. Now he says, be strong and of good courage. Verse seven only be strong and very courageous. Verse nine, have I not commanded you? Have you not been paying attention? Didn’t I say this over the last two verses? Be strong and of good courage. Why did he tell him to be strong and good courage? Be strong, very courageous. Be strong and of good courage. When do you need courage? When do you need strength? You need courage. When you have opposition to your courage, you need strength. When you have opposition to your strength, we don’t need courage for a life with no problems. When God says, be courageous, be encouraged or be strong and of good courage. When he says, be strong, he’s telling you, you and I we’re going to need it.
Pray Always and Don’t Lose Heart!
I know that’s really encouraging, but it’s the truth. Sometimes we walk into life and we think we don’t need strength and courage. You need to be strong and of good courage. Why? Because you’re going to face some adversity this week. You’re going to face some opposition. We’ve got to be ready for it. He says, be strong. Be of good courage. Josh, when you’re going into the Promised Land, Oh, we think God promised grapes on poles live in the hollow. This is going to be great. Woo easy. No, you have enemies. You have to overcome and be strong and of good courage. This is what God’s telling you. He’s prepped us for it so we pray, always pray and we don’t do not lose heart. So now we’ve got these two points. He said, I want you to pray always and I don’t want you to lose heart. And then he illustrates those two points of prayer with a story context. Stay with me. He’s talking about prayer, he says, I want you to pray always about everything and I want you to not lose heart and get discouraged and give up and lose motivation. Then he tells this story. Let’s check out the story. There are two characters in this story. In verse two, we’ll find them.
There are the certain cities, a judge who didn’t fear God and regard man. That’s the first character. This guy had no feelings of respect or reverence for God. No respect and he doesn’t exalt or acknowledge anybody having a higher status, Mt. Carmel Church. He doesn’t acknowledge anybody higher than him. He has no motivation to please people, and no motivation to please God. He doesn’t care what people think. He thinks he’s top of the food chain. He’s the judge and he answers to no one. That’s the first character, a second character, going verse three. Now there was a widow in that city and she came to him saying, get justice for me from my adversary. So now we have a widow, a woman who’s a widow, a widow woman, not a little woman with a woman, but a widow that is a woman. I have to say that clearly or I started thinking anyway, widow woman. And here’s the widow in the city.
Number one, she’s in a society that’s dominated by males, and very much discriminatory towards females. Not only is it discriminatory towards females, but now widows or even a lower class than that. So here’s our two characters. See Jesus could have told this parable because it’s just a story. He’s just telling a story. He could have told this story about a poor man. Why did he choose a woman and why did he choose a widow woman at that? Because he wanted to show a huge contrast in the likelihood of this woman with her social status, with this kind of guy who doesn’t give a rip about God or people and he’s calling the shots. What are the likelihoods of her getting justice or him doing for her? What she wanted him to do. Her odds are slim and none and slim is out of town. She has virtually no shot in this case, right?
Jesus is picturing that there is no way it’s going to happen in the natural. Anybody who ever had something in your life you’re believing God for and in the natural, and it looked like there was no shot it was going to happen. It looked like there was no way it would turn out. No way it’s going to turn around. This relationship’s never going to turn around. My job, my finances, my health is never going to turn out. This is the picture that Jesus is painting for you and for me in prayer. Two characters. Now, look what she says. She goes to him, she says, “Hey, uh, give me justice for my adversary.” There’s just an opponent in a lawsuit and accuser, somebody comes to her in court case cause she was a widow, probably trying to take advantage of her, took her to court for something and she needs justice that she’s had.
There’s an injustice done against her and she’s coming to the judge and says, “I want justice.” Look at verse four it says, then he would not for a while would not for a while. Now notice there’s no timeframe put on that he would not for a while. Again, we’re talking about prayer because how long is a while? It defense who you ask. Have you ever said, “How long has that been?” What’s been a while? How long is that? It’s open and there’s a very good reason why Jesus left his timeframe open because if he would’ve put a date stamp on it, it would have excluded somebody.
If he’d have said she went to him for a month, you’re like, “Okay, yeah, but I’ve been here for a year.” If he’d have said it been a year, you’d have been like, “Yeah, well, I’ve been believing God for two years.” Because there’s no date stamp that while applies to you and applies to me, applies to everyone. I don’t know how long your while is, but God said we’re all in it together. She went to him for justice for a while and he wouldn’t do anything but afterward. Everybody said afterward when I went out now, now after what? After afterward. He wouldn’t do it for a while, but afterward, I’ll come back to that. He said within himself though, I do not fear God. He just reminding himself that I’m not doing this for any other reason. Jesus is emphasizing it isn’t because he got convicted that he did it. It wasn’t because he felt the peer pressure of other people. I do not fear God nor do I regard man yet because this widow troubles me.
I will avenge her or I will give her justice lest by her continual coming. She wearies me. Now we know what afterward was cause he wouldn’t do it for a while, but afterward, after what? After her continual comment, he said, I’m worried about this lady. I don’t fear a gun. I don’t fear people, but I’m worried about this lady. I’m worried about her continual coming. She wearies me now it’s really interesting, the word weary. I looked it up, and the Greek word, word for weary, it’s actually, the literal word for under the eye and to strike someone under the eye or to black and this dude is starting to be concerned for his physical wellbeing. He’s like, “I don’t know, this woman’s got crazy eyes or something.” He said, “She wearies me. She’s wearing me out.” Has anybody ever been worn down before? Parents are just thinking yes in the name of Jesus right now. You’re like, you said no and you felt pretty strong about your knowledge in the beginning and they kept coming, kept saying, please can I come? That’s why I encourage you as a parent, if you’re going to say no about something, make sure it’s something you’re willing to really hold your know on or otherwise. Your no’s starts to lose street cred, Mt. Carmel Church.
Continual Coming is not attached to a Period of Time but Accomplishing a Goal
If they could talk to you out of it every time you need to move your barrier at a different location. Let your yay be yay and your nay be nay. Anyway, that’s parenting. Let’s move on. He’s worried. He’s getting afraid that she’s going to do something because she keeps coming. Now, this is important, not just coming, her continual coming not just coming. This widow is continually coming. Now, here’s what the word continual means, so are you ready for this? I hope you are. This is really good. This sets the stage for every day. It’s the Greek word and it means the point where something ends, terminates or is completed. The conclusion or a goal, the conclusion or goal of something. How do we apply that? Chad? Here’s how it applies to me. You apply it however the Lord shows you, but here’s what I got out of it. Continual coming means this kind of coming that is not attached to a period of time, but it is attached to the accomplishment of a goal. This woman isn’t coming with anything in mind of how long it takes. She’s coming with everything in mind, is the goal that she’s after
The clock and the calendar is not her goal. Justice is her goal. She keeps coming because her goal is not about how long it takes. The goal is getting why I’m coming. Too many times in prayer, Remember the context of prayer. Our prayers are attached to a period of time, more than they’re attached to a goal. I’ll pray, but man, it’s been a month. Wait a minute. Are we praying towards the goal? Are we praying towards the clock? Are we praying towards a goal? Are we praying towards a watch, a calendar? What’s what? This woman didn’t come, her continual coming. The thing that was freaking this judge out is he saw something in her eyes. This woman didn’t care. She was senseless. You know how most of the time you’ll ask people a lot and then eventually that thing will kick in. You’d be like, “Okay, this is getting weird.”
I don’t want to bother them. Do you know what I mean? Like someone’s supposed to get back with you and they haven’t gotten back with you. So you text him, you’re like, “Hey, uh, just following up to see a few of, uh, you know, decided anything on that. No pressure. I just wanted to run it by you and just make sure I was just thinking about it today.” Then they don’t get back with you again. Another few days go by. Okay. So I’m just sending him an email saying, “Hey, just Hey, just phone up about the thing we’re going to get together on. Just make sure you’re still at what point then.” Okay, I’m going to call him, but I don’t want to come. I don’t want to feel like I’m being a nut. This woman didn’t care. He saw that in her eyes. So I better do something Mt. Carmel Church.
This woman has a goal and it’s not attached to time. He’s talking about prayer. He said, “She just keeps coming.” So as I was thinking about this, I thought, “Okay, what are we going to do about it?” So I had this illustration up. The LSU Tigers just won the national championship in college football. I’m not an LSU fan, but I was watching a press conference and the coach was doing this interview and they did this little clip and they showed it and I was like, as soon as he said it, I’m like, “Oh yeah. Oh yeah.” Now I’m a sports guy, a football guy. So it may not connect with you the way it connects with me but it did something for me. And so I brought the clip. I wanted to play this clip because you can’t just get it without being in the moment. So here’s the question. We’ll set it up. The reporter asked, “Do you feel like it’s setting the stage for where you want this program to be in the coming years?” And this was his response. Check it out.
“We Comin, and we Aint Backing Down”
Do you feel like this is laying the groundwork for next year? You’re coming. We’re coming it way back now. Look at him eyes, laying the groundwork for the next year. You’re coming. We’re coming it way back now. This is what the woman said, “What are you coming to?” We comin’ and we aint backin’ down. Go tigers. That’s what she said. I believe she said that to the judge. I believe he sold us in her eye. She said “We coming, we coming and I ain’t backing down. It’s no go away.” The next day you saw.
We comment something about that, so she wasn’t back and down. She wasn’t going away. Now listen, this is important about the story. The story is not a comparison of us being the woman and the father being the unjust judge. This is not a comparison. This is a contrast. Oh, you need to know the difference. We’re going to know. Look what it says. Look at verse six. Then the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge said and shall God not avenge his own elect who cry out day and night to him. Though he bears long with him. I tell you that he will avenge them speedily, Mt. Carmel Church.
Yeah. If this woman who has no cultural clout, no way of getting justice in the natural, if she just by common can convince this unjust judge who doesn’t fear God and doesn’t fear man to give her justice, how much more will your heavenly Father who loves you answer your prayer when you come to him day and night? He’s not like the unjust judge. Second Timothy says he’s a righteous judge. We’re not coming to an unjust judge. We’re coming to a righteous judge. So he says, this persistence in this woman is what I want you to imitate, but I’m going to treat you differently than the unjust judge. I started thinking about this and I thought, Oh Lord, what does this mean for us? What does this mean for us? What if in 2020 at The Road’s Church just keeps coming?
What if we just keep coming? What if we just keep coming in prayer? Well, if we keep coming after it, you know you’re in one and I was like, rock, Rocky illustration you after Apollo one or Apollo one, Rocky one, Rocky two he wants to rematch with Rocky and his manager, Apollo creed or not all of Creed’s manager comes up to him and he says, “You don’t want this guy. He’s all wrong for you champ. He’s all wrong for you. I saw you beat that man as I’ve never seen but he beat before and he just kept coming.”
What if, see, because I’m going to speak to people who’ve lost heart because we have all lost heart. It’s easy to jump in and say, “I’m praying, I’m believing something’s going to happen”, but I’m talking about what’s happened when you get discouraged. See, we’re not. We don’t keep coming because we don’t have disappointment. We don’t keep coming because we don’t have discouragement. We don’t keep coming because we’ve never failed. We just keep coming because our goal is not getting what I want from God. My goal is him. I’ll keep coming after him. I don’t know how it’s going to turn out every time, but I keep coming. Just keep coming. Keep praying. Well, I’m not seeing a breakthrough like I need to see. I know. Keep coming. We coming and we aren’t backing down as well.
What if you told that to the devil? What if you told that to the opposition? What if you told that to intimidation in your brain? You said, “We coming, I ain’t backing down. I’m here. I’m still praying. I’m still believing God.” What if the enemy, said that about you? What if he said that he’d looked at all the demonic forces, the kingdom of darkness, and he said, “I don’t know what to do with these people. They just keep coming. I know what I’m throwing into their life. I know the thoughts I’m planting in their head. I know the discouragement that I’m trying to throw their way. I know what I’m telling people to say about them, but they just keep coming. They just keep praying.” I want to encourage somebody who’s lost, heart Mt. Carmel Church.
There’s a bunch of people watching online and right here in the room, but you’ve gotten discouraged. Keep coming. You said, “Well Chad, I did that and then that didn’t happen or I did that and that happened.” It doesn’t matter. My goal is not at that moment. My goal is bigger than that moment because I’m coming after him and in this moment I’m not going to be denied. I’m not going to be denied what God has for me. I may not see the answer that I want to see at the moment, but my goal is not my preference. My goal is what he has for my life. I’m going to keep coming. God’s wanting to stir your heart today. Pray always and don’t lose heart. I want the enemy to be able to say about you that they just keep coming.
I tried to get them out. I tried to talk him out. I tried to scare them out. I tried to do whatever I could to get them to lay down their gifts and callings and walk away from it. I tried to get him to lay down and quit and forget and just accept that as part of their life and nothing’s ever going to change. I tried to get them to think that their spouse was never going to change. I tried to get them to let go and just let that be what it’s going to be, but they just kept coming. If the unjust judge, we’ll let go. What’s a loving father going to do in her life?
I’ve had my share of disappointment in my life, but I said this to God. I watched that. I said, “Ah, that’s me. I’m going to keep coming. I’m going to keep coming and ain’t backing down.” I’ve shared pretty openly last year the pretty discouraging year. The enemy will try to steal. He tried to attack my courage, but through this 21 days of prayer and fasting, I’m adopting Ed O in my heart and prayer and we’ll say coming. They ain’t backing down. We’re coming. I am don’t know. The enemy’s going to say, “Wow, where are they coming from? How come these people keep coming? How come people keep coming and getting saved? Getting involved in relationships and how come they keep coming after Southern Illinois and believing God and they don’t just throw up their hands and say, who knows?”
Do we just keep coming? We’re believing God’s going to do something. They keep coming after healing. God, you know what? There’s a disappointment. It doesn’t matter. They just keep praying. As you see, I’m a little excited. I want to close with this. Here’s what I feel like God wants to do today. If you’ve ever felt disheartened, discouraged, disappointed, and wanted to lose heart, maybe you’ve already lose lost heart. Maybe there’s somebody that you stopped praying about things. I had people after the first half come to me. Thank you. That was me. I had stopped praying because I thought it was never going to change. I’m telling you that you can. I can point to people and say they’re where they are because they didn’t lose heart. They kept coming, kept coming, kept coming, kept coming. Don’t stop. I believe the Holy Spirit wants to touch hearts today for people who need to come in here. It’s time to come. Again, continually come, not attached to a timeframe attached to a goal. Set your heart uncovered.
Thanks so much for watching with us. We love our online Mt. Carmel Illinois Church and Norris City Illinois Church family and we invite you to connect with us. We have a few different ways you can do that. Our website is theroads.church. We are on social media as well.
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Sermon Notes: https://theroads.church/sermon-notes