PUSH THROUGH FAITHLESSNESS
Do not withhold Your tender mercies from me, O Lord; Let Your lovingkindness and Your truth continually preserve me. Psalm 40:11
Yesterday's devotional brought an all-time high number of responses. The topic hit a nerve. I challenged each of us to ask God for something big and know that He can still perform miracles. I acknowledged that it is hard for me to hold on and not cave. Faithlessness invites me to give up on God. Now, I know the verse, “The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” James 5:16 I learned it as a kid but learning the words and understand the meaning can be many decades removed.
There are situations that can appear absolutely hopeless. Evidence wants to prove that nothing changes because of my faith. Sometimes, things get worse. The pain of watching everything regress nearly shuts me down. The fatigue that accompanies long-term stress wears on me and causes me to look ten years older than I am. Numbness beckons to me like a drug and promises me rest. The thought of my heart sliding into hopeless oblivion is attractive. I just want the striving to cease.
Is this where you are today? You’ve been wrestling with God for a long time over one single thing. The more you pray, the more things seem to decline. To continue to keep your heart alive to hope and faith appears futile. You’re fast approaching the line where quitting pretends to be the smart thing to do. Dreaming is painful. God appears to be cruel as He withholds the blessing you seek.
This is what it is to live in the shadows. And I have. But let me testify that I have seen powerful prayers answered within the course of a week. The deliverance was glorious and there was no way I could have predicted its arrival. The ticking of heaven's clock was indiscernible. While I waited, there were moments in the journey that I collapsed into faithlessness. It was a lonely place and I didn’t stay there long. Only prevailing in prayer brought the blessing and I'd like to believe that I have greater stamina in future spiritual battles because I've learned not to give up.
Over what issue have you taken hold of God in prayer today? How long have you labored? Hang on. Dig your fingers into the fabric of his robe and don’t let go. Today could be the day He speaks a word and prison bars open wide.
I am willing to prevail in prayer but can't sustain it without Your grace. In Jesus name, Amen
Originally published Monday, 26 February 2018.