There are times when I feel like Rodney Dangerfield. I don't get no respect.
I have a friend who likes to call me in the middle of a weekday morning, when I'm studying at home. He'll say, "I hope I didn't get you out of bed. I realize this isn't a Sunday."
I have another friend who likes to put in the old needle. He says, "You ministers have it made. If it's a good day, you can get up and do a little studying and make a few calls. If it's a bad day, you can just turn over in bed and say your prayers."
I'm a bit defensive about all of that. I said to my friend, "You've told me two things by your comment. First, you don't know much about the ministry. Second, you know even less about prayer."
Over the years, my success in prayer has been more intermittent than persistent. There have been times when I have gotten hold of the hem of the garment, but I have not always been able to sustain the grasp. One thing I know for certain: you don't turn over in bed and say your prayers.
To confess to you that I have had a struggle sitting at the feet of Jesus is something I do with a great deal of embarrassment. Because when I read the New Testament, I discover that in the ministry of our Lord, prayer was absolutely crucial. For me, prayer is preparation for the battle. For Jesus, it seemed to be the battle itself. For Jesus, prayer was like running the marathon, and ministry was like going to receive the gold medal. Prayer was like taking the final examination, and ministry was like going to receive the diploma.
Where did he shed great drops of blood? It was not at Pilate's hall. It was not as he staggered under the load of the cross up Golgotha's hill. It was ...
This sermon is available to PreachingToday.com members only.
Haddon Robinson was a preacher and teacher of preachers all over the world. His last teaching position was as the Harold John Ockenga Distinguished Professor of Preaching at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.