Sunday, May 29, 2016

Persistence in Prayer



Scripture:

Luke 11:5   And he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread;  6 for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.’  7 And he answers from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.’  8 I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs.

Luke 11:9   “So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you.  10 For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.  11 Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish?  12 Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion?  13 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

Observation:

Just after teaching him followers how to pray — the Lord’s prayer — Jesus continues with additional instructions. Helping his followers then and now to understand the importance of persistence he tells a story. A friend will eventually answer the door and share his bread just because you persist in knocking. If this is the case with an earthly friend — who will share with you when you are in need — imagine the response of our heavenly Father!

We are to seek on-going and continuous spiritual growth in our lives. Persistence in prayer will take us further and further in that journey as the Father hears and answers our prayers. God will give the gift of the Spirit to all who ask and the spiritual blessings will continue. 

Application:

The encouragement for followers of Jesus Christ is to meet with God regularly in prayer. It is in the space of prayer that we learn to become persistent about the things of God. God molds us and shapes us because in prayer we spend time in fellowship with the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The persistence comes from the longing to return to that space in God’s holy presence. We are encouraged to ask, seek and knock because as we do, we are led into deeper spaces of participation with God.

Yes, God provides for our daily bread but then, so much more! We are invited into knowing God and experiencing life in the fullness of the Spirit. Do not give up! Be persistent in asking, abiding, and participating and your time in prayer will become the space of transformation.

Prayer:

LORD, I am awed by the invitation to spend time in your holy presence. Thank you.  Amen.

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