Jesus went into Gethsemane and fell into prayer. He confronted the atmosphere. We can be drawn to real supplication. He can take us into the midst of warfare. We think on things pure and just and lovely and be bold in Him. (Philippians 4:4-8; Matthew 26:39-40)

Speaker: Chris Arman, Thomas Schaller
Sermon 12694
Date: 2024-04-03
Time: Wed 7:00pm

 

P. Schaller –

Well, sweet. Those are three sisters. Huh. Wow. Beautiful. Great. All right. So, turn with me to Philippians 4 just for a few
minutes and I asked p. Chris Arman to share tonight on prayer. Today is prayer day and also I’d
like to say rejoicing day. A day of rejoicing. The sun is shining above the clouds and it’s so
beautiful up there. I’m sure. Yes. So, we have, you know, when I heard the brother, the team
sing and thinking of Miles going to Greater Grace Christian Academy and then I see the girls
here singing and the team and I think about what P. Taggart said about being thankful for the
lives and the teaching.

So, when God teaches us, guides us, guidance is important in your life. To be guided in your life.
And God is our guide even unto death in Psalm 48. And he will direct us. He orders our footsteps
and gives us his Spirit and we learn how to live like P. Taggart said.

So, I love that theme actually. Just rejoicing a lot in life and being thankful for so many things
that God has given to us. And these young men, you know. How did they say – hello, church.
My name is Luke. Luke Miller. What? What up! What up, church! Okay. And then their hearts,
you know, being behind the curtain and looking out to see what’s the effect of their, of the play
and then the many, many salvations. Many people coming, asking questions. And we would
say, well, what about the system of operating and we think what about the mystical part of
God’s work? What about prayer? And well, this isn’t perfect. Yeah. But that’s like God uses us,
and we are thankful for what he uses and how he does it.

The jawbone. The jawbone that Samson used. The five loaves and two fish. Mary, the peasant
woman just simply saying let it be unto me according to your Word. In the high school today,
we taught about doing difficult things and I asked them to write a paper, one page, on what
does it mean to do a difficult thing? Have you ever done a difficult thing? And what is it to do
difficult things? And we talked about – this is just short for your thought.

We have the comfort zone in life and then you have wisdom and wisdom leads us to be
proactive and we ask the class, what does it mean to be proactive? And one student said to be
– it’s the opposite of being reactive. Reactive. Like reacting versus planning and preparing and
being proactive in life. Like deciding way before. Like thinking about life way before.

So, it relates to a chapter in that little red book of wisdom by Mark DeMoss. He called it the
wisdom of first. The wisdom of first. You know, I mean I better spell that out like that. Let’s see.
Firsts. Okay. He had three of them. The first hour of the day and this is so you can live a
proactive life. What is it? The first hour of the day? It’s surrender. It’s yielding. It’s an attitude.
What is your will, Lord? My will is comfort zone. What’s easy for me to do. What’s convenient
for me to do. My will is comfort zone. I do the things. Comfort food. Comfort couch. Comfort
entertainment. Comfort life. Comfortable. Talk to only my friends or do the things I want.

Immediate gratification. Comfort zone. But the first hour of the day when you wake up in the
morning and there’s a verse where God sent – he said I sent prophets and rose up early in the
day. They rose up early in the day. Moses did. Joshua did. Jeremiah did. Rose up early in the
day. Jesus did. Rose up early in the day.

There’s where you can get your guidance, your prayers, your life. You’re doing things not
comfortable but you are doing things in what is his will. What’s God’s will for me? What is he
saying to my heart. And I’m speaking to myself about this, you know, as well of course. And it is
what would you have for me today, Lord? What a beautiful attitude. It may be difficult to listen
to God or to obey God or to be guided by God, but it’s the only way to live and let him search
our heart, search our heart in the beginning of the day. And then, it says the steps of a
righteous man will be ordered by the Lord. And he will lead us and give us guidance and give us
words. Words in our heart in the first hour of the day.

The second one was the first day of the week. The first day of the week is the Sabbath day. We
have another first. Sabbath. What is the Sabbath? In Isaiah 58 talks about the Sabbath. That the
Lord gives or the fasting that the Lord gives he also speaks about the Sabbath there. The
Sabbath is a day of rest. And I believe we need that. We need a day we’re not running around.
We have a time. We have a period. We have a time when we change it up. We defuse. We are
rebooted. We are plugged in again. We are released and then back in. We are shut down and
then we are restored and then we are back in. It has to do with our devotional, our quietness,
our meditation and our reading.

And I really encourage the people that I minister to all the time to be readers and thinkers and
meditate and trust and listen and receive direction. Guidance. Without guidance, where will my
life be? I will be reacting and maybe in my comfort zone, but will I ever get beyond myself? Will
I get beyond my flesh? Will I get beyond my own way of life? Will I be Spirit-filled as a way of
life? Imagine being Spirit filled as a way of life. Is that amazing! Having love as a way of life and
when the anomaly happens, not love but jealousy, I recognize it – That’s jealousy. I’m bringing
that before God. God, I’m putting that right before you. Thank you. You’re going to take care of
this thing. You’re going to root it out of me. You’re going to deal with it. You’re going to show
me and guide me ’cause I want your guidance in my life. Isn’t that good? It is. It is.

So, the third first is the first dime of the dollar. First dime of the dollar. What does that mean?
My money. My dollar. I give you, the Lord, a dime. Here’s the dime, Lord. The first dime of the
dollar as a way of life. It’s like it’s so beautiful. It’s not like an afterthought. It’s preparation. It’s
preparation in my heart and in my mind.

Rockefeller – John D. Rockefeller who gave away in his lifetime the equivalent today of $1
billion. He gave away and he tells when he was a poor boy, his mom gave him $1.50. She said,
John, I want you to – what are you going to do with $1.50? And yeah. She said this is what I want you to do. I want you to give 10% of it to the church. First thing. Right off. He learned it as
a boy. He learned that thing as a little boy. Later, when he became a billionaire, he did it. He did
it all the time. I mean there was a spiritual change in his life. He wasn’t always like that but he
changed. He had a spiritual revival in his life.

So, I’m just saying in these few thoughts here tonight that guidance is a very real thing in the
kingdom of God. And God gives it to you, but you’ve also got to be listening to it and you also
have to be prepared in your heart to say, Lord, I have my comfort zone and my way of life and
my way of thinking. And the Lord says to us, I want you to change that up. I want you to do
sometimes what I’m asking you to do is difficult. Are you available? And you say yes.

I mean if you are. You say yes. But you can say yes when the first hour of the day. Yes, I’m
available. I’m listening. Then, when we’re in the church and we are hearing these kind of things
for instruction and guidance in life and I mean, you know, these folks, young folks that were on
the stage, I have to give their parents credit of course. You give the Holy Spirit is the one that
does this work in the heart in the darkest hour of people’s lives. Are you just going to do what is
easy or comfortable or are you going to learn another way? And that’s the wisdom as he says in
that chapter. The wisdom of the first. It’s good. Good title.

So, then as we learn to live in the Spirit, get the guidance from the Spirit, and the mind and the
heart of God and the Spirit, then we really do well. Let’s read it here and I’ll finish. Philippians 4:4,
That’s a message in itself, isn’t it? Let your moderation or your ability to – it’s another message,
vs. 5. I think I should have started in vs. 6. These are all great. Vs.6. No anxiety. Yield it up. Yield
it up to the Lord. Don’t have any anxiety, but in everything by prayer and supplication with
thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

Now, months ago, we started to pray for Eurocon. We had a marriage getaway. God answered
the prayer. We had Eurocon. Hundreds of people. Eurocon. God answered the prayer. We came
back to America. We’re just speechless in a way. Thank you, Lord. That was amazing. Then, the
Easter play. The Easter play came and the Body of Christ and the peace and the quiet burning in
the heart. The joy and the Lord answered the prayer. He did again. And then, with regards to
missions in the world. One soul. One soul. Imagine. One new area. One village. A new city.
Imagine with somebody whose life is changed by the Holy Spirit.

What’s your method? It’s just prayer and the Word and love and guidance from God. One
Korean pastor. He had a million people in his church. Maybe you’ve read about these. Six
largest churches in the world are in Korea with a million people. Maybe read about it. It’s
amazing. So, they, somebody interviewed that pastor and he said, what do you do every day?
He said, I go before God in prayer and I say, God, what do you want me to do? And then he
gives me guidance. And then I do what he wants me to do. Wow! I took that personally. And I
think that’s so simple. A million people to pastor but how do you do it? It’s like go to God and of course we don’t have that and that’s not my point. My point is how do you live your life? How
do you and I live our lives? And this is how we find this strength and this peace.
Look at the text, vs. 7.

There it comes. The peace of God which passes all understanding. Do you
know that some people may look at your life and say, how do you do it? And just say this is how
it happens. Or somebody would say I could never do that. I could never do that. And we would
all say, yes. We understand that. That’s for sure. There’s many things we – and that’s good.
We’re not saying it like that we’re only saying that prayer is powerful. Prayer is answered.
Prayer does affect young people.

Prayer does send missionaries out on the field. Prayer does
bring money into the church. Prayer does heal somebody’s emotions or mind. Prayer is
answered. That somebody has a hindering spirit or something plaguing them continually and
they can’t get rid of it and prayer can remove that thing. And Jesus said men ought always to
pray and not faint but we do. We can faint because we get afraid or we get nervous or worried
or um and those kind of things.

Vs. 7. This is a great text here. Anybody here ever thought you’re going crazy? How about it?
Am I losing my marbles? Am I going crazy? Okay. That’s happened to me but then I have this
verse. Honestly, I go back to this verse. Jesus said he will keep our hearts and our minds. Isn’t
that amazing? Isn’t that beautiful? I mean this is how I read it. He’ll keep our hearts and our
minds healthy. That we’ll be healthy people.

That we will have like what P. Taggart shared that heart of thanksgiving and that heart of
appreciation and the heart of like joy and thanksgiving and answered prayer and gifts from God
and joy and purpose in life. And it’s easy. The yoke is easy. It is. It’s harder to be a sinner and to
live in sin than it is to be a Christian and walk in the Spirit. Walking in the Spirit is the gift of God
to you and me. It’s a way of life and that happens. We learn how to walk in the Spirit and this is
what happens to us.

Vs. 8. So, be careful not to put all kinds of garbage in your mind and heart. I don’t want to see
it. I don’t want to see it. Sometimes, there’s something that comes up on TV and it’s – turn it off
or walk away. I don’t want to see it. I don’t want to see it. It might be some news that you hear
or something and of course we’re not escaping reality but when I have a choice. That’s a good
lesson here. Vs. 8. So, I’m thinking on these very good things that we can see around us. Amen.
P. Chris. Just come up. Do whatever you want to do to share with us. Okay.

P. Chris Arman –

All right. Let’s all stand. Psyche? No, we don’t have to. I just wanted to use that
word in the pulpit. How many remember that word, huh? Psyche. All right. Just a few minutes.
Just so we can just build on what we heard and um I just love that idea that God calls us to do
something that might be uncomfortable and something that might be beyond us. As I was
listening to P. Schaller, the verses that I thought of are in Matthew 26 when Jesus goes to the Garden of Gethsemane and he asks the disciples come with me a little bit. Amen. Well, let’s pray since
we’re talking about prayer. That would be fitting if we pray. (Prayer).

And so, in Matthew 26, he says to the disciples, watch and pray. And the verse that really touched
me is in vs. 39. It’s talking about Christ. And I think that’s what prayer is as I’m learning it. God
calls you just a little farther. He says just come a little farther. And you know many times we fall
asleep and Jesus said to the disciples, you know, could you not watch with me for just one
hour? And the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. And this is like the story of the human race.
And it’s our story where we say, God, I want to but I’m so weak. I want to pray. I want that
communion with you.

And P. Schaller said it the other day. I think it was Sunday night. It’s just like you’re sitting in the
car and you’re just talking to God. And that used to happen to me in Africa. Just I would walk –
our house wasn’t far from where we would do our evangelism and I would just walk there and
say, hey, God. This is our time. I’ll just won’t say anything. If you have anything to say, I’ll just
listen. Maybe you don’t even say anything. But I’m just quiet before God. And Christ would say
like just come a little farther. A little farther in your prayer life with me.

And Luke 18:1 is where Jesus says, “men always should pray and not faint.” But it’s not, it’s not
so with my house unfortunately. That happened to King David in 2 Samuel 23:5. He says like God
has showed me a king and a man of God should be just and should rule justly, but it’s not so
with my house. Like I’ve had all these things that have gone wrong in my life David says. But
he’s made for me an everlasting covenant. And that’s what God does for us.

And you know, it’s the Holy Spirit in us that says teach us to pray. That’s what the disciples said
in Luke 11:1. They didn’t say teach us how to pray. They just said teach us to pray. And God calls
you and says, hey, just go a little farther and then I will fill you. I’ll guide you. I will direct you. I
will empower you. You will get addicted to prayer and I have this picture. I don’t know if we can
put it up. Okay.

These are called [?]. Okay. This could be the equivalent of a witch doctor in
West Africa. It’s supposed to be something cultural, but “Gulu Wang Kulu” (?) means like the
great dance. And in Malawian culture, the guys dress up with these costumes and they dance.
And, you know, the world looks at it and says this is culture. Oh, we should celebrate this. But
it’s really, it’s really charged with like demonic spirits. And what happens sometimes and
especially where our church is now, it’s kind of a little bit away from the downtown. And guys
will run through dressed like that.

Run through the neighborhoods with machetes and they’re asking for money. And you know, one time our church, like the front door, like the doors over there, they face to the main road. And while maybe while I was preaching on time on a
Wednesday night like tonight, I saw a guy like this with two machetes out there and making all
the kids run away. They all run up to him and then he growls at them and they run away. And to
me, this is sometimes what prayer is like. Like to confront that, that’s not an easy thing to do.

There’s a lot of fear to confront the Gulu Wang Kulu. I could never do it. When I was in Bible
college in Ghana, similar, there was a witch doctor that came in and they were playing drums
and everything and he came and asked me for money, and like a deer I just like handed over
money. And I thought, oh man! I was angry. Like I was defeated. But God says go a little farther.
Go a little farther. Trust me. And then as I was preaching that time on that Wednesday night
years later, the translator was – who’s also the pastor – he said hey, let’s go out there and talk
to that guy with the two machetes dressed crazy like that with all those colors. And I said, I
can’t. I can’t. I’m afraid. He’s got machetes. Not even one. He’s got two of them. He said, come
on. Let’s go. Let’s go.

So, we went out. We dismissed the church. You know, usually we shake hands with everybody
at the end of the service. We just went right out the door and the guy was right there. And we
went right up to him and thank God for P. Marlin ’cause he was like holding my hand. He just
pulled me up there. And we just said to him, are you born again? Straight, straight at him. And
you should have seen this guy. His name is – I remember his name. His name was David. King
David I called him. He took off his mask and he said, no. I’m not born again. I said, what are you
doing? You’re scaring children to give you money. How about receive Christ and come to the
church? And he prayed with us. He received Christ right here with his whole Gulu Wang Kulu
uniform.

I think that’s what prayer is like, you know. The devil puts a huge barrier in front of you and
saying you can’t do it. You know, maybe you’re going to do it but you’re going to fail. And you
won’t pray anymore and God says just – Jesus says come a little farther. I know you’re going to
faint. I know men should always pray and not faint but come. Just trust me. I’ll be with you. And
Christ is like the P. Marlin that kind of drags you out to talk to the enemy. Go right in the enemy
territory and speak to them and you never know what happens.

And in closing, we’ve done it once. I said to my kids I said, hey. I want to pray with you, each
one of you before you go to bed. And we just sit down even if it’s five minutes. We pray
together and we did. And one of my daughters, we sat and talk for an hour about like the end
times. She asked me like a bunch of different questions. It was so sweet and so beautiful. I
thought why haven’t we don’t this like every night, you know. But it’s a school night, you know.
But I think if we can just say to God like God, teach me to pray. Just be honest with God. I’ll do it
too okay. That will be our pinky promise.

What can God do in our life, you know? And I just think of like I was thinking what’s the greatest miracle that I’ve seen this year so far that happened in prayer? You know what the one is for me this year so far? It’s like Mike Veader.
Many of us know Mike Veader who had a heart attack and a stroke and he’s back teaching at
the dojo. And I’m like we prayed for him. We prayed for him to get healed. Like that’s amazing.
Like that’s the power of prayer.

So, I want that God give it to me. God teach me to pray and Christ will say just come a little
farther. I’ll be with you. I’ll pull you over there. You’ll talk to the Gulu Wang Kulu. Guess what?
They’re just going to melt in front of you because the devil’s a roaring lion, but he’s got no
teeth. Can’t bite. He’s just loud, right? He’s like one of those small dogs that barks really loud
but their bite is like a little pinch. Oh, is that all you got?
And we can trust God and believe God. Amen. (Prayer)

 

Please enjoy these sermon notes from the messages preached at Greater Grace Church in Baltimore. These notes are provided to aid in your study and understanding of the Word. Note that these notes do not represent complete, word-for-word transcriptions. Also, they may contain omissions as well as some errors in spelling and structure, etc., as we attempt to provide them as soon as possible. Our hope is that these notes serve as a way to help you search and connect with messages on related subjects and passages. Thank you for your interest in the ministry of Greater Grace.