Summary: Growing Deeper in Prayer – Psalm 86 – sermon by Gordon Curley (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


(1). When You Pray.

• Come humbly (vs 1-2)

• Come daily (vs 3)

• Come intentionally (vs 4)

(2). What to Remember.

• God is forgiving (vs 5)

• God answers prayer (vs 6-7)

• God works miracles, (vs 8)

• God alone is God (vs 10)

(3). As You Pray.

• Learn God's way & Obey it (vs 11-13).

• Talk to God & Trust Him (vs 14-15)

• Be Specific in Your Prayers (vs 16-17a).

• Thank God for His help (vs 17b).


Sleeping Beauty, Tom Thumb, and Quasimodo were all talking one day.

• Sleeping Beauty said,

• "I believe myself to be the most beautiful girl in the world."

• Tom Thumb said,

• "I must be the smallest person in the world."

• Quasimodo said,

• "I absolutely have to be the ugliest person in the world."

So they all decided to go to the Guinness Book of World Records to have their claims verified.

• Sleeping Beauty went in first and came out looking deliriously happy.

• "It's official, I AM the most beautiful girl in the world."

• Tom Thumb went next and emerged triumphant,

• "I am now officially the smallest person in the world."

• Sometime later, Quasimodo comes out looking utterly confused and says.

• "Who is Martin Fielder?” [Replace with some other ‘suitable’ person in the fellowship]

• TRANSITION: Now that has nothing to do with my message;

• But I thought you might enjoy the story!


• On Tuesday I was at the Ministers Fraternal, for the Church Leaders of the area:

• Mark Madavan from Locks Heath Church;

• Shared the New Year fact that LHFC had taken a Bible verse as a moto for the year.

• The verse he chose was on prayer.

• Ephesians chapter 6 verse 18:

• “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.”

• He then shared with us, how he had asked lots of people in his Church;

• Especially the older members – if they felt they prayed enough?

• Now I could have told him in advance the answer he would get;

• Because the answer was and always is’ “No!”

• That is not just true at LHFC, but true here at DRC;

• And true in every Church I have ever gone along too!

Quote: Charles Swindoll from his book ‘Strengthening Your Grip’

• “If you find it difficult to pray, then you are in good company!

• The wartime theologian and writer Dietrich Bonhoeffer, for example,

• Once admitted that his prayer experience was; “Something to be ashamed of”.

• The Great reformer, Martin Luther, anguished in prayer,

• Saving three of the best hours of the day to pray; yet he seldom seemed satisfied.

• Go down through the list of Christian greats,

• We find one after another working hard at prayer,

• But frequently you will find they were dissatisfied,

• Some of them even woefully unhappy about their prayer life.

• E. M. Bounds, Alexander Maclaren, Samuel Rutherford, Hudson Taylor,

• John Henry Jowett, G. Campbell Morgan, Joseph Parker, Charles Haddon Spurgeon,

• F. B. Meyer, A. W. Tozer, H. A. Ironside, Billy Graham,

• Great men, strong Christian examples,

• Magnificent role models,

• Yet you can hardly find one of that number who was satisfied with his prayer life.

• Oh, they laboured in prayer, they believed in prayer,

• They taught and preached prayer...”

• But like you and me, they were all strugglers, who had to work hard at it!

• So if you struggle when it comes to prayer;

• Then you are in good company!

When it comes to praying you can use the ‘carrot’ or the ‘stick’ approach:

• I guess you all know that saying;

• It is an idiom that refers to a policy;

• Of offering a combination of rewards and punishment to induce behavior.

• So there is no point hitting you with the ‘stick’;

• And telling you again and again that you must pray more!

• We all know we need to pray more!

• I think the Bible uses the ‘carrot’, the reward approach;

• That is the Bible constantly shows us the benefits & rewards of praying.

• And todays psalm is a case in point.

(1). Come to God in Prayer.


• The mighty Aztec empire was the most powerful Mesoamerican kingdom of all time.

• It stretched for more than 80,000 square miles;

• Through many parts of what is now central and southern Mexico.

• This enormous empire reached from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf coast;

• And from central Mexico to the present-day Republic of Guatemala.

• Fifteen million people,

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