And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? Luke 18:7 (NIV)
Persistence in prayer has not been my one of my strongest points. I have seldom prayed more than a couple times for any one request. I must admit that I have sometimes even wondered why I need to pray at all. You know what I want and need even before I ask for it. Yes, I do. Can you think of any reasons why I want you to be persistent and consistent in your prayers to me? I know that you want me to live in an intimate relationship with you. Yes, I do. Coming to meet with you in prayer is part of that intimate relationship you want to have with me. Yes, it is. Have you sometimes thought that I should give you exactly what you want at the very moment you ask for it? I have thought that before; I’ll have to admit. Why don’t I always give you what you want, when you want it? Sometimes, I have asked for something that would not be good for me. You might have something entirely different that is far better for me. I might not be ready to receive what I am asking for from you. It might not be the right timing. An improper gift or a gift given before the right time might be a curse rather than a blessing. You are wise to understand that.
What possible answers might I have for your prayers? Your answers could be “yes”, “no”, or “not yet”. That’s right. “Yes”, is not the only possible answer to your prayer. “No”, may be an even better answer to your prayer. Don’t think that I have not heard and answered your prayer simply because my answer to your prayer was “no”. In response to a “no” answer to your prayer, what would happen if you kept on praying? I might better understand why you said, “no” to my prayer? That’s right. “Not yet”, is an answer to your prayer that would offer a good reason for you to keep on praying, don’t you think? Yes, I do. Why is that? As I keep on praying, I will better understand your timing. Yes, you will.
You can be very sure of one thing. What’s that? I delight to hear and answer your prayers. It gives me great joy to see you coming to rely on me. I do want you to live in a close and intimate relationship with me. I do want you to ask me for all that you want and need. Will you keep on bringing all your prayers to me? Yes Lord, I will. That will be very good.
Lord, often I have prayed just once for something. If I didn’t receive an answer I did not pray again. Now I see that you want me to be urgent and consistent and persistent in my prayers. I will pray and not give up. I will wait until you hear and answer my prayer. Amen
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