Plodding in Prayer

Old Testament prophet Elijah is a poster child for a person willing to persevere in prayer.  He  . . . “Prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops” (James 5:17,18, emphasis added). Praying for an end to the drought, with his face between his knees, he sent his servant out seven times to see if the rain clouds were on their way (1 Kings 18:43).   

In this results oriented, end-justifies-the-means society in which we live, outcome wins the day over preparation nearly every time. Too many churches are enamored with programs while apathetic toward prayer. As Wesley Duewel writes in Mighty Prevailing Prayer, “Probably if we had half the activities we do but prepared for each one by hours of prayer by our people, we could see far greater results.”

William Carey, considered by many to be the father of modern missions, said of his biographer, “If he gives me credit for being a plodder, he will describe me justly. Anything beyond that will be too much. I can plod. I can persevere in any definite pursuit. To this I owe everything.”

God is looking for plodders in prayer, those who’d rather be on their knees than in the limelight, those more interested in paying the price through petition and intercession along the way as opposed to jumping in to claim credit in the end.

Since I am by nature an impatient person, the following has been one of my favorites for years: “They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31, KJV). David penned, “Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD” (Psalm 27:14).

Nowhere do these words help more than in our prayer lives. Unsearchable things await those willing to plod through petitions, continually “bothering” God with their prayers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *