PRAY: Lord, I am promising that I won’t give up, even if I grow weary of praying the same prayers for the same people. Help me persevere.
Saturday – Day 11
Approaching God – How do you imagine God as you approach him today: as an unjust judge, a critical observer, or a loving parent? Read these words as you enter his presence and experience his graciousness, and his benevolent and unconditional loving nature.
“I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:18)
Listening to God – Read Luke 18:1-8. As you reflect on this passage in relation to praying for those on your list, be encouraged to persevere in your prayers this month. Bill Hybels writes about an experience after a baptism service in their church. “I bumped into a woman in the stairwell who was crying. I thought this was a little odd, since the service was so joyful. I asked her if she was all right. She said, ‘No, I’m struggling.’ She said, ‘My mom was baptized today. I prayed for her every day for almost 20 years. The reason I’m crying is because I came this close to giving up on her. At the 5-year mark I said, “Who needs this? God isn’t listening.” At the 10-year mark I said, “Why am I wasting my breath?” At the 15-year mark I said, “This is absurd.” At the 19-year mark I said, “I’m just a fool.” But I just kept trying, kept praying. Even with weak faith I kept praying. Then she gave her life to Christ, and she was baptized today. I will never doubt the power of prayer again.” Pray that the power of this illustration gives you persistence in your prayers.
Talking to God – Instead of beginning your time focusing on what you’re praying for, begin your time focusing on who you’re praying to! Ask God to help you see the loving and benevolent Heavenly Father who is anxious to hear your prayers and grant your requests through the blood of Jesus Christ. May his Spirit help you focus on seeing him clearly.
Ministering in God’s Name – Continue to pray for those three names on your list. Imagine for a moment attending the services where those who you are praying for will be making a profession of their faith. What emotions will you experience: joy, tears, humility, thankfulness…? God desires that all people come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Reflect on the importance and power of persevering in prayer and the blessing of someday seeing his Spirit touch the lives of those you’re praying for today.
Surrendering to God – If you are too busy to pray, you are too busy. Is there anything you do today that has greater consequences than where one will spend eternity? Surrender the time that’s needed to be that intercessor today. Be encouraged by these words, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” (Galatians 6:9)
By David Struyk