Until it Finally Comes
Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.
Have you ever prayed for something that didn’t come about right away? I know I have. Not everything that we ask of the Lord manifests immediately. However, just because a thing takes time to come to pass doesn’t mean that you are lacking faith. Don’t confuse the Prayer of Faith with praying in faith. The two may sound alike, but they are different in origin and in the way they are administered.
The Word of God explains that there are gifts of faith, which are distributed as the Lord sees fit. There are times in a person’s life when God steps in and, by a breath of His Spirit, enlightens them regarding His will. I’ve had this gift in operation many, many times in our ministry. As I am ministering or preaching, the Holy Spirit will strongly reveal God’s will regarding a healing, miracle, or sometimes even a situation that somebody is facing. This revelation creates such a belief and conviction that I know, that I know, that I know if I will pray right then and there, what I’m praying for will manifest immediately. That’s the Prayer of Faith!
This Prayer of Faith is an endowment. It’s a divine interruption in the process of my increasing faith. It bolsters my developing faith to hook up with what God desires to accomplish. So what do I do? In obedience and urgency, I pray! The prayer offered in agreement with the powerful revelation from God almost always creates immediate and tangible results. Miracles are birthed into this world through the operation of this gift. It would be wonderful if I could pray this way all of the time, but that’s not the way God distributes His giftings.
So how do we pray when the Prayer of Faith or the gift of faith isn’t in operation? We pray in faith and in obedience. While the Prayer of Faith only has to be uttered once because it’s actually inspired and initiated by God, praying in faith may come from our own desire and take time and patience to see the materialization of what we are seeking. Jesus talked about praying in faith several times. In order to teach us that we should repeatedly come to the Father about the same matter until we see results, Jesus gave the example of the widow who kept coming to the unjust judge. He also illustrated this concept when He told the story of a man who, with boldness and importunity, would not give up until he received his request. This man kept asking his neighbor to help him by providing a late night snack for his unexpected guest. The Bible says that because of his continual asking, the neighbor would give him all he needed.
If the gift of faith doesn’t come on you, you simply can’t pray the prayer of faith. So what do you do? You pray in faith. You pray with importunity, which means you flood the throne room of God with your request over and over. You can continually ask for the biblical thing you are seeking until it comes. This style of prayer isn’t an indication of weakness. This type of insistent beseeching isn’t a sign that you’re not in faith. Instead, it is the evidence that you are in faith. Jesus told us to pray this way. This manner of continual asking is your obedient faith in action and it will produce results.
If it’s biblical, whatever you’re asking of God will come. However, it most likely will take time. Whatever you do, don’t give up! So how long do we continue believing? How long do we stay in faith and expectancy? How long do we keep praying about it? Jesus explained that we should do these things continually until it finally comes!
Then he said to them, “Suppose one
of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight
and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread,
because a friend of mine on a journey has come
to me, and I have nothing to set before him.’
“Then the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother
me. The door is already locked, and my children
are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give
you anything.’ I tell you, though he will not
get up and give him the bread because he is
his friend, yet because of the man’s boldness
he will get up and give him as much as he needs.
“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.”
We do not want you to become lazy, but
to imitate those who through faith and patience
inherit what has been promised.
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise,
as some understand slowness. He is patient with
you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone
to come to repentance.
—2 Peter 3:9