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Friend at Midnight

Praying with precision, passion, and perseverance.

Introduction

(Read Luke 11:1-13)

Warren Buffett is one of the greatest investors in our day, and he is also the second richest man in the world, with an estimated worth of $44 billion. In June 2005, Buffett decided to help raise money for his charitable foundation by offering an online auction for someone to have lunch with him. The winning bid was $351,100—the price of access.

We have access to the creator of the universe and it costs nothing. How often do we avail ourselves of God’s willingness to hear our prayers?

Prayer is not a slot machine. I ask, he gives, end of story. Prayer is about relationship: ("Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?) It is also a mystery, we don’t always have the big picture. What looks like bread to us might actually be a stone. So we bow to God’s great wisdom. However in this story, Jesus encourages us to pray with precision, passion, and perseverance.

Precision in Prayer

(Read Luke 11:5-6)

The man is quite specific. He doesn’t say, “I’m hungry can you help?” Or “Gimme some bread” But 'Friend, lend me three loaves of bread.”

Elsewhere Jesus encourages precision. In Matthew 20:31-34, when the blind man says, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!" We read that Jesus stopped and called them. "What do you want me to do for you?" "Lord," they answered, "we want our sight." Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.

To the onlooker it may have seemed obvious what they wanted. But Jesus asks them to be specific.

In 1540 Luther's ...

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