PERSISTENT PRAYER

Bible Reading:  Luke 18:1-7

In Luke 18, Jesus told a parable about the widow who persistently came to the unjust judge to get from him what she wanted. If the judge didn’t really care about this woman but was compelled by her persistence to give her what she wanted, how much more will a good God give us what we ask for!

Psalm 40:1 says: “I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry.” Perhaps the key word here is ‘patiently’. In a society that wants things instantly, God sometimes makes us wait. Someone once said that waiting is one of the hardest parts of the Christian life. Ma and Pa Rowbotham, founders of the WEC Missionary Training College where my wife and I studied, used to say: “God loves stickability!”.

I became a Christian in 1963. My home background was not Christian, and there was a lot of opposition and resistance. Nine years later, shortly before Esther and I left to serve God in Indonesia, we were ministering together in a large missionary meeting.

We both gave short testimonies and at the end of the meeting, a grey-haired, middle-aged man approached me. “Are you really Michael Ross-Watson and do you come from Essex?”, he asked. When I confirmed this, he began to hug me and cry. Embarrassed, I asked what was the matter, and all he could say, over and over again, was “God has answered my prayer!” He turned to the flyleaf of his Bible and showed me my name and a date, 7th April 1953. He told me that he was an evangelist, holding meetings in a local church and each afternoon he visited people in their homes and invited them to the gospel meetings. “One afternoon,” he said, “I visited a home where a woman invited me to come back in the evening and talk about religion with her husband. I went back and they rejected all that I had to say. They told me that they had a son, Michael, and as I was leaving, I suddenly had a tremendous burden to pray for this boy”. Amazingly, he continued, “I have prayed for you every day for 19 years, and today, I have seen that God has answered my prayer”.

God had given this man a burden to pray and he kept on praying, each and every day until his prayers were answered. That is persistent prayer!

Questions:

Is there someone or something that God has really burdened you to pray for and you are still waiting for the answer? Don’t give up!

Why do you think that sometimes God wants us to wait for His answer?

Someone has made the statement, “Most people who are saved, have been brought to Christ because someone prayed.” Do you agree with this statement, and if so then how should that affect your prayer-life?