We’re not a very persevering people, are we? We usually want what we want and we want it now. We’re a Carpe Diem culture, afraid we’ll miss out on life if we don’t grab what we can when the opportunity rises. Our world doesn’t exactly extol waiting as a virtue. But God does….
Remember the story of the persistent widow? She kept going to the judge again and again and again until she received the justice she was seeking. Although the judge was both unjust and uncaring, the woman finally wore him down because of her relentless asking. Jesus relayed this parable to his disciples to encourage them not to give up when praying (Luke 18:1-8). He wanted them (and us) to learn how to persevere.
We cannot live in a hurry-up mindset and develop perseverance. When we face situations that require more time and effort than we originally expected, we have to resist the tendency to give up. Especially in prayer. D.L. Moody tells the story of a woman who decided to pray every day for one year that her unbelieving husband would find Christ. After that time period, with no signs of change, she purposed to pray daily for another six months. With still no evidence of conviction after eighteen months, she committed herself to continue her daily pursuit of God on behalf of her husband until she took her last breath on earth….
Not long after that renewed commitment, she found her husband on his knees crying out to God for salvation. Like the persistent widow, this woman did not stop asking or seeking. She kept knocking.
So should we.
If the Lord has placed burdens on your heart, don’t be tricked into thinking your persevering prayer doesn’t matter. Don’t think you could be doing something more productive with your time. Keep knocking, my friend. Keep knocking until your fist turns raw. Keep knocking until you have no more tears to shed. Keep knocking and waiting, waiting and knocking. One day, the door will open…perhaps when you least expect.