Persistent Prayer

Persistent Prayer

Reflection: “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” Luke 11:9 

Response: 
Prayer is the essential means of communication and synchronizes us in alignment with God’s will and purpose. Yet, an unyielding pressure exists between believers, our kingdom agenda, and the cares of this life. We experience resistance daily between our situations, trials, and temptations, and the quality of our devoted life with God. Distractions abound and compete with our alone time with Him.  

In a time of so much negativity and pain, we must put forth a concerted effort to take time to build our spiritual life. It takes effort to block out all the noise of what is taking place in the world around us to see God and hear Him. What He wants to say or do may be distinctly different. Our ability to discern a spiritual perspective versus the natural viewpoint is correlated to our connectivity of relationship in Him.  

How often do you speak to Him or sit and listen to what he wants to say to you? Is your prayer time filled with thoughts of the day, scrolling on your phone, or multi-tasking? We might be like the friend in Luke 11 who gives God so many reasons why we cannot open the door of our heart to His direction? Is it possible that it is inconvenient? Perhaps it is uncomfortable. Maybe it seems too hard. God stands at the door, however, waiting for us to put aside all our conveniences, distractions, and comfort—and let Him in. 

God persistently pursues us, but we, in turn, must persist in seeking Him. According to an online dictionary, persistence refers to “continuing in a course of action without regard to discouragement, opposition, or previous failure.” It means to be determined and unshakable. It implies that one must actively work and pursue after an expected end rather than waiting for it to drop in one’s lap. As a result, this suggests that success in prayer is not solely based on relationship but also based on persistence.  

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God wants us to endure and persist in prayer even when it feels like He is non-responsive and does not care. We persist in prayer even when it looks like nothing is changing. We persist in prayer even when it is inconvenient, uncomfortable, and hard. We persist because His word says:

  • “Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” Matthew 7:7
  • “For everyone who asks receives; and the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” Matthew 7:8

Sometimes prayers are answered quickly. Other times we must travail, endure, and persist—maybe for weeks, months, or even years—until they are fulfilled. But it is definite and assured that He will do His part and respond when we do our part by praying persistently.

The Choice to Love

The Choice to Love

Reflection:The Lord did not love you and choose you because you were greater in number than any of the other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples. But because the Lord loves you and is keeping the oath which He swore to your fathers, the Lord has brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed (bought) you.” Deut 7:7-8

Response: 
According to Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, the word covenant refers to “a coming together… [where]…God initiated, determined the elements, and confirmed his covenant with humanity. It is unilateral. Persons are recipients, not contributors; they are not expected to offer elements to the bond; they are called to accept it as offered, to keep it as demanded, and to receive the results that God, by oath, assures will not be withheld.” Thus, as believers, our relationship with God is not based on merit, status, or how good we are. We are accepted because God chooses to love us regardless of our weaknesses or failures.

The underlying basis of God’s covenant relationship is love. His covenant reflects His steadfast, everlasting love towards us. His love aids us through difficulties, carries us through storms, shields us from unforeseen circumstances, and protects us from harm. In His love, we enjoy enlargement to our influence, multiplication of our seed, and fruitfulness in our harvests. His covenant of love enjoins us blessings that pursue and overtake us as we walk in partnership with God’s will and way.

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God’s love toward you as a believer is not based on merit—what you have done, what you do or don’t do, how good you are, or because you deserve it. God loves you because His nature is love. He chooses to love you. His love is active and always present even when you feel you don’t deserve it. Embrace His choice. He chose you.