Imagine: you’re sitting in a dark room wishing and hoping you could see what was in the room or that you could just simply walk around in it with out bumping into things. No, there isn’t anything wrong with the lights, they work just fine. In fact, they work amazing – never burn out, always turned on when used, and brightens the whole room beyond what you would need. The issue isn’t even the power source or the switch – all is in working condition. The matter is that you’ve just chosen to not turn on the lights. You talk about how glorious it would be to see things in the room, but spending the time to go and turn on the light switch just isn’t worth it. You’d rather do everything in your own power in the dark. You’ve got a cell phone and it’s 6 inch screen of light works just fine. You tell your friends of the potential of the room if the lights were on and you ask others to take interest in your room, but you just don’t bother to turn on the lights.
Crazy right? And yet sadly this methaphor can describe many of us at times when it comes to our “light switch” we just don’t even turn on.
This light switch is prayer and maybe, more importantly, corporate prayer (praying with others).
Oh, I’m not saying you don’t have a prayer time or pray for your needs – please keep doing so. But I’m specifically referring to that promise we find in Scripture when it comes to prayer, found in John 14:12-14:
“Most assuredly I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to my Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.” – Jesus [John 14:12-14]
We know that greater is not more spectacular but greater in number/magnitude impacted. We also discussed that this promise of answered prayer is in the context of greater works for Jesus, it is to glorify Himself and the Father (not us), prayed according to what goes along with His nature (His name), and to those who are disciples of Jesus (not just Christian in name only but following Him, denying themselves).
We have a chance as believers to impact the world through prayer that will be answered. Want to see more missionaries sent out into the field to places not reached? So does God – pray & He will answer that. Want to see your pastors and leaders encouraged and strengthened? So does God – pray & He will answer that. Want to see strongholds taken down in your life or your town? So does God – pray & He will answer that. Want to see more power in your local church body, more leaders raised up, and greater ministry take place with more opportunities to serve available? So does God – pray & He will answer that!
Unfortunately, our favorite TV show, our children’s activities, meaningless time spent on our iPhones or iPads, excursions with friends, and many other things are more important to us than seeing prayer answered. We let these distractions keep us from going to God in prayer. We’ll gladly get together for a potluck or any other social activity, but get together to spend 1 hour in corporate prayer together? No thanks – we’ll pass! And we miss being part of a work that Jesus wants to do and sadly, we really don’t care either.
In Luke 18:8, Jesus says “when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?” and when you examine the context of the passage, you find it is in relation to prayer.
Please understand, this is not a lashing to say “we could all pray more”, because we all could. No, this is an exhortation to pray more, but pray more corporately and pray for works of the Lord. Don’t just spend your prayer time (and group prayer time) praying for your own needs but go deeper praying for works for the Lord to do. And trust me, the Holy Spirit will guide you in your prayers if you come with this mindset.
You can continue to sit in a dark room wishing and hoping what it would be to have a room fully lit up in the power that is available or you could start turning on the switch. I hope you use the switch because when you do, you’ll enjoy prayer in a whole new way and see the Lord move in ways He has been waiting for you to ask Him to move in!
You’ve just read this post, why not start with just taking 2 minutes for the Lord to move in His church to stir His people up to pray.
This blog post comes from further thoughts of the sermon on John 14:1-14 titled “Famous (Almost) Last Words” which can be found by clicking here or simply visiting http://www.refugesanger.com/teachings