Persistance in Prayer
Have you ever sincerely prayed for something … and nothing happened?
Did you get discouraged about it? Did you stop praying about it?
Maybe you should have continued.
The Persistent Widow
I don’t fully understand it, but God has designed prayer to involve the aspect of persistence. Jesus wanted us to appreciate the need for perseverance in prayer. He told us a story to encourage us to continue to pray about something until that something happened.
Now Jesus was telling the disciples a parable to make the point that at all times they ought to pray and not give up and lose heart, 2 saying, “In a certain city there was a judge who did not fear God and had no respect for man.3 There was a [desperate] widow in that city and she kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice and legal protection from my adversary.’ 4 For a time he would not; but later he said to himself, ‘Even though I do not fear God nor respect man, 5 yet because this widow continues to bother me, I will give her justice and legal protection; otherwise by continually coming she [will be an intolerable annoyance and she] will wear me out.’”
6 Then the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says! 7 And will not [our just] God defend and avenge His elect [His chosen ones] who cry out to Him day and night? Will He delay [in providing justice] on their behalf? 8 I tell you that He will defend and avenge them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find [this kind of persistent] faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:1-8 Amplified Bible)
When there is something we desperately need, we are to keep praying about it and not give up (vs.1). In the story, the widow kept coming to the judge day after day (vs. 3). The wicked judge eventually he decided to help her because her “continual coming” was going to “wear him out” (vs 5).
Jesus told us to learn from the words of this unjust judge (vs. 6). Our God will defend and avenge us when we “cry out to Him day and night.” (vs. 7). This display of persistence in prayer is an important expression of faith (vs. 8).
God grows our faith and honors it as we persist in prayer.
I suggest that you make a list of the five big things that you, your family, and/or your ministry truly need, and that God would be glorified by giving to you. They should be things that you can ask for with full confidence.
Make a commitment to pray daily or several times a day until either the answer comes.