My heart is steadfast, O God,
my heart is steadfast.
I will sing and make music.
Do you admire persistence in your children? How about when they just keep asking and asking and asking? Sometimes they just won't take "no" for an answer. What do you do when your child keeps saying, "please, please, pretty please?"
I started thinking about perseverance and faith as I was reading about Elijah. He has just had the confrontation with the prophets of Baal on Mt. Carmel. It hadn't rained for three years, but God told Elijah that He was going to send the rain. Elijah sent King Ahab home, then he went to the top of Mt. Carmel to pray. (1 Kings 18:41-46) After praying, he told his servant to go and look towards the sea. The servant looked, then came back and said that there was nothing there. Six times Elijah sent his servant to look towards the sea, and six times the report was the same.
What would you do at this point?
Have you ever prayed and prayed about something? What do you do if the answer doesn't come the first or second time you pray? Do you give up or do you persevere?
Jesus taught persevering in prayer. In Luke chapter eleven, Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, known as The Lord's Prayer. Then He gave the illustration of the man who we to his neighbor in the middle of the night asking for food. Jesus said that because the man was persistent in asking, the neighbor answered his request.
So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you;
seek and you will find;
knock and the door will be opened to you.
For everyone who asks receives;
he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks,
the door will be opened.
God doesn't want us to give up and stop praying. If we are praying according to His will, then we can be sure He will answer. Elijah can testify to that. The seventh time the servant looked out at the sea, he saw a cloud the size of a man's fist. The rain was coming.
Do you see the cloud?