In this sermon, third in a series on prayer, Pastor Neil addresses the question of when to pray and what to pray, explaining the “4 Alls of Prayer for All Y’all,” outlined in Ephesians 6:18. Here are some excerpts:
…The Bible urges us to pray on all occasions, no matter what is going on in our lives, because there is never a time when we are not standing in the need of prayer.There is never a time when we don’t need God and His grace. Prayer connects us with God. Prayer connects us with our Heavenly Father who loves us, and who invites and welcomes us into His presence on all occasions….
…One method of praying “with all kinds of prayers and requests” that you may be familiar with is the ACTS acrostic. Each letter of ACTS stands for a different kind of prayer:
“Always” here means “with all perseverance.” We are always to be on the alert to what God is doing. We are always to be on the alert against the attacks and tricks of Satan. We are always to be clothed in the armor of God. As Jesus told His disciples in Luke 18:1, we should“always pray and not give up.” Which is to say, we are not to get discouraged and lose heart in our praying or in our life as followers of Jesus. Paul describes this persistence orperseverance in prayer in Romans 12:12 as being “faithful in prayer.”
We can also pray generally for saints we don’t know personally – for Christians and the church in America, and for Christians and churches in other parts of the world. We can pray for Christians in places where believers and the Christian faith are under attack. In places like China, Iraq and Iran, and other Muslim-majority countries; In Europe, where Christianity seems to be dying out in many places; Africa and Central and South America. On every continent. And for all the saints who serve as missionaries – ambassadors of Jesus Christ – in all those places. We can pray for the number of saints – the number of Christian disciples – to increase in every place and every nation, including our own nation and our own community.
There you have it: The “4 Alls of Prayer for All Y’all.”