“I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will get up and give him as much as he needs." Luke 11:8 (NASB)
We have been asking God for a buyer for our home for almost a year now. It is hard to believe that it has been that long, but it has. We have been praying night and day, without ceasing for a buyer. Both Larry and I say that we have never prayed so long and so hard for anything ever in our lives.
For a while our prayers were bold. We were pounding on the door as the man in this parable did. He was apparently pretty bold and maybe even obnoxious about wanting some bread for his midnight guest. He was not going away for anything without that bread! He was pounding and banging and yelling, "Friend!! Friend!!" He must have woke the entire house, and maybe the neighbors too with his demands for food to feed his unexpected guest. The guy gave it to him, according to the parable, because he was persistent.
I did not waver in my asking. Each day began with me loudly, boldly pounding on the door asking the Lord to bring us a buyer for the house. Some days included shaking the doorknob, kicking the door, and even screaming to be heard. Each night ended with further prayer for the same thing.
I imagine that guy got kind of tired...he must have been tired and maybe a little embarrassed to keep on with it knowing He was bugging the entire house and surrounding people at midnight.
I have been at it a lot longer than he and I am exhausted from the ordeal. Persistence takes energy. I started on my feet, and I am now sitting slumped in a heap on the threshold, my knocks faint and soft. My pleas are a mere whimper now and they often mingle with tears.
God is not hearing anything He did not already know about. He has been aware of this from before the beginning of time. He knows the day and time He will answer us. He knows what He intends to accomplish in us and through us to people we come in contact with so I am confident this too is a part of His plan.
His reasons for the appearance of a delay in answering our prayer are His alone. He is perfect in knowledge and perfect in holiness. There is no malice or evil in His delay, God does not procrastinate.
So today I begin anew- knocking, pounding, begging and pleading for this thing...So much of our earthly reputation depends on it. But is that the most important thing? Far greater and far and away more important is our response to God in this time.
Bitterness and anger could easily come and make their home in our hearts, and it has been something to be aware of and to fight against for sure. We choose persistence in this situation believing that God is accomplishing what He wills to accomplish in us during this time. We choose faith, believing that He will answer us in His time. He is faithful, and He has already enabled us to be faithful as well.