If you are like me, when we pray faithfully for a long, long time and we see no results, we tend to get discouraged, for it is our human nature.
However, there is Someone Who is above our human nature, Whose schedule we cannot even comprehend. Fortunately for us and others, God is the One Who knows the real plan and puts it into effect in His timing.
Sometimes, we pray for our children or loved ones for years and wait expectantly for a change for the better. They may be caught up in alcohol, bad companions, or drugs, and most importantly, they desperately need salvation. Pleading with them does no good and will not make them consider the pitfalls of their actions. We turn to prayer, beseeching the higher power of God, Who can save them from danger.
Eventually, however, the world tells us that we are wasting our time and that no change will happen, despite our best efforts. Sometimes, in discouragement, we do give up, feeling that the situation is hopeless or that God is not listening. Not only does giving up on prayer not fix the problem, but it also provides a dark pit towards which we gravitate when we feel that our best efforts have done nothing to protect our loved ones from a very real and imminent danger.
At such times, it is good to remember, and also to remind others who may be discouraged in prayer, that we are not powerful within ourselves, but that we must continue to rely upon the Holy Spirit's help. For, as the apostle Paul writes, "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express" (Romans 8:26 NIV). God wants us to learn how to persevere and to trust Him alone and not ourselves. Often, it takes a long time for us to "get it"!
I recently heard a homily about perseverance in prayer. We were told to pray, pray, and pray some more. PUSH was the wonderful acronym used: "Pray until something happens".
Matthew 7:7,8,11 – Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him! (NIV)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, please teach us patience and perseverance in our prayer life, so that we can be a small part in bringing others to live in Your glory someday. We thank You for providing us with such a powerful tool to show that we love You and our brothers and sisters in this world. Amen.
Listen to this devotional
Listen while you read: "Bringing In The Sheaves" (Lyrics)