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Pastor and author, John MacArthur posed the following exercise:

Imagine that you are granted the amazing opportunity to build a new church from the ground up in a community that needs a good church. From the following list you can pick three things to start with, which three things would you choose? Rank them by putting a “1” next to the one you think would be most important, a “2” by the next most important, and “3” by the third. Think big!

_____ a brand new, state-of-the-art, multi-million dollar facility (debt free)

_____ a gifted, talented, unified staff

_____ an operating budget of $1,000,000 per month

_____ a congregation that was enthusiastic and equipped for evangelism and missions.

_____ a prayer ministry composed of faithful people interceding at all times

_____ a national TV/Radio ministry featuring solid Bible teaching

_____ a top notch youth and children’s ministry

_____ a wonderful, church-sponsored Christian school

_____ a biblical counseling ministry staffed by wise and godly leaders

_____ a vibrant worship ministry

That’s an interesting exercise, right? For some reason, at first blush, the thought of “a prayer ministry composed of faithful people interceding at all times” doesn’t grab my attention the way the others do, but of course, it should. All those other things are dependent on God to provide, and we as a church would continue to have not if we asked not in prayer. Prayer is most needed and most essential, but mysteriously it is often most neglected.

That’s why we have been studying the prayers of Paul. I hope you can listen in as we study yet another of Paul’s amazing prison prayers found in Philippians 1:3-11.