The Storyteller – The Parables of Jesus #6: Praying with Power




(Pastor Chris Jordan – Beausejour Church)

The Storyteller #6

To listen to or download the audio MP3 or printable sermon notes, click HERE.

OPENING HYMN: What a Friend we Have in Jesus


  • Dear God, I went to this wedding and they were kissing right there in church. Is that OK?
  • Dear God, thank You for the baby brother but what I prayed for was a puppy.
  • Dear God, I want to be just like my daddy when I grow up but without so much hair all over.
  • Dear God, my Grandpa says you were around when he was a boy. How far back do you go?
  • Dear God, maybe Cain and Abel would not kill each other so much if they each had their own rooms. It works out OK with me and my brother.
  • Dear God, please take care of my daddy, mommy, sister, brother, my doggy and me. Oh, please take care of yourself, God. If anything happens to you, we’re gonna be in a big mess.


  • God is getting ready to do something new and wonderful in our church family!
  • To get ready for this, God is calling us to go deeper into the secret place of prayer.
  • Discuss personal prayer life and love for prayer including stories of answered prayer.

THE BIG IDEA: In Jesus’ trilogy of parables on prayer, we learn three secrets to praying with power: having an urgent boldness, a hopeful perseverance, and a humble attitude.

  • Discuss personal prayer life and love for prayer including stories of answered prayer.
  • God is getting ready to do something new and wonderful in our church family!


“1 Now it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.” 2 So He said to them, “When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. 3 Give us day by day our daily bread. 4 And forgive us our sins, For we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one.” (Luke 11:1-4, NKJV).

  • QUOTE: “The knowledge of God’s Father-love is the first and simplest, but also the last and highest lesson in the school of prayer. Prayer begins in a personal relationship with God as well as a personal, conscious fellowship of love with Him.” (Andrew Murray).
  • RESOURCE: “The Secrets of the Secret Place” booklet. Learn to pray the Lord’s Prayer.

“5 And He said to them, “Which of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves; 6 for a friend of mine has come to me on his journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; 7 and he will answer from within and say, ‘Do not trouble me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give to you’? 8 I say to you, though he will not rise and give to him because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will rise and give him as many as he needs.” (Luke 11:5-8, NKJV).

  • The midnight hour = when life gets hard and tough and you feel like giving up.
  • Who does the friend represent in the story? Jesus!
  • “There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (Prov. 18:24b, NKJV).
  • The word persistence = importunity, meaning urgency and boldness.
  • The first secret to power in prayer is praying with an urgent boldness.
  • QUOTE: “Will you believe the promise? It is Christ who gives it. No lie ever fell from His lips. O doubt Him not. Pray on if you have prayed, and if you have never prayed before, God help you to begin today!” (Charles Spurgeon, Prayer Certified of Success).

“9 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 11 If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”” (Luke 11:9-13, NKJV).

  • In this passage, Jesus says, “Keep on asking.” (present tense, continual).
  • Why do we sometimes ask and not receive? “You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.” (James 4:3).


“1 Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, (purpose) 2 saying: “There was in a certain city a judge who did not fear God nor regard man. 3 Now there was a widow in that city; and she came to him, saying, ‘Get justice for me from my adversary.’ 4 And he would not for a while; but afterward he said within himself, ‘Though I do not fear God nor regard man, 5 yet because this widow troubles me I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.’ 6 Then the Lord said, “Hear what the unjust judge said. 7 And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? 8 I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”” (Luke 18:1-8, NKJV).

  • QUOTE: “The parable is a story using contrast rather than comparison. The readiness of God to effect justice lies in contract to the reluctance of the judge who only dispenses justice out of exasperation with the nuisance of the widow’s persistence. The point of the contrast is in the fact of God’s willingness and readiness; further, we are not widows but members of Christ’s own body – His bride.” (Spirit Filled Life Study Bible).
  • “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but where dreams come true, there is life and joy.” (Prov. 13:12, LB).
  • The second secret to power in prayer is a hopeful perseverance.
  • Jesus gave us the purpose to this parable in the first verse: “Pray and don’t lose heart!”
  • Never give up in prayer! P.U.S.H. – Pray Until Something Happens!


“9 Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men–extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ 13 And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’” (Luke 18:9-14, NKJV).

  • Jesus gives His purpose in the first verse: To rebuke those who were self-righteous.
  • The first person in this parable was the Pharisee who (1) prayed with himself, (2) boasted in his good works, and (3) compared himself to others.
  • A religious system based on good works leads to religious pride. God hates the proud!
  • The second person prayed that God would be merciful to him ‘a sinner.’ Here he recognizes and acknowledges his guilt before God. He was humble and repentant.
  • Jesus said: “I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” (v.14).
  • The third secret to power in prayer is praying with a humble attitude.
  • If you want God to answer your prayers, get rid of your ‘holier than thou’ attitude. Stop comparing yourselves to others. Stop judging others.


  • “9 As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at his tax collector’s booth. “Follow me and be my disciple,” Jesus said to him. So Matthew got up and followed him. 10 Later, Matthew invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners. 11 But when the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with such scum?” 12 When Jesus heard this, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do.” 13 Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.” (Matt. 9:9-13, NLT).


If the three secrets to praying with power are having an urgent boldness, a hopeful perseverance, and a humble attitude, then what are some obstacles we need to overcome?

  • opposite of urgent boldness: when prayer becomes merely a religious routine, to-do list
  • opposite of perseverance: when we get lazy or lose heart or give up in our prayers
  • opposite of humility: when we walk in pride, judge others, walk in unforgiveness.

These are all things we need to overcome if we want to see power in our prayers!

CLOSING: Prayer for people.


About Chris Jordan

Husband. Father. Author. Pastor. High School Bible Teacher. Follower of Jesus. And I enjoy a good cup of coffee!
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