One of my favorite stories in Scripture is the parable found in Luke 18 about the woman who keeps coming to the judge with her request. The judge wouldn't grant her plea, so she kept asking and asking. After a while, the judge finally gives her the legal protection she has continually desired. We learn that even if answers don't come immediately, we can't give up, and particularly in our occupations as mothers, we need to constantly come to God to ask for help.
In the parable, we might automatically assume that the judge represents God. Not so, according to Pastor John MacArthur. He states, "The judge is not given as a symbol of God, but rather in contrast to Him. If such an unrighteous man would respond to persistent pleas, would not God, who is not only just, but also loving and merciful, do so more readily?" The whole point of the story is to show us that God, even if He delays, will act and will most definitely respond to us when we come to Him.
We live in a society with "quick" everything. The grocery store magazines tout quick and easy recipes. Our local bank advertises their quick and convenient banking. Whether it's fast food, fast Internet, or fast results, it's easy to get caught up in the pace of society and to forget that some things (like prayer) take time and persistence. Again, the hard part is learning that results aren't always immediate.
As a mom, I've learned some wonderful life lessons about perseverance, persistence and not expecting immediate results by having the twins do music. When Justin started classical guitar, I remember his instructor at Levine School of Music saying, "The wheels of the guitar turn slowly." At the time, I had no idea what he meant -- the wheels of the guitar? Hmm -- but over time I realized that he simply meant that the student needs to stay with it -- that progress might sometimes be slow. Just as a child can't give up after his or her first recital, we, too must continue in our praying.
In praying with other moms while we were in a co-op during the guy's high school years, I learned what it meant to persist in prayer by hearing the other moms pray. There was one precious mom who prayed for a job for her husband for months and months. Thankfully, he eventually found employment -- but there were some very discouraging times for her and the family during the interim. Her faith and trust in the Lord were such an encouragement to all of us. Others prayed consistently for loved ones. This experience strengthened my resolve to do the same in prayer.
I love the words that Jesus gives us:
"Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lost heart." -Luke 18:1
What are you praying for? Relationships? A successful homeschooling year? Your child's heart? Your husband? Let me encourage you to keep going to God's throne. Through Jesus, we have access to the Father and are allowed to come into His presence! I love the picture in the book of Esther when the king holds out the golden scepter to her, bidding her to come near. We, too, can draw near to the Lord in prayer!
I like how Charles Spurgeon puts it: ---Whether we like it or not, asking is the rule of the Kingdom.
Here are a few verses that also might encourage you:
"You do not have because you do not ask." -James 4:2
"Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." -Matthew 7:7
Friends, take heart. Be assured that God will respond when we cry out to Him. He will never turn us away!