Why should we persist in prayer? Why should we keep asking God to help us, provide for us, save our children, or change impossible situations?
So often when we pray it feels like nothing is happening, nothing is changing. Why should we keep going? Why should we keep asking and praying persistently?
Over and over again, the Lord tells us to persevere in our prayers. To not give up. Over and over he promises that he is a God who answers prayer, who loves to give gifts to his children, who has a perfect timing to answer our prayers. Here are a number of reasons we should persist in prayer:
1. We should persist in prayer because God promises us that if we persevere in prayer we will reap with joy
Those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy! He who goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him. Psalm 126:5-6 (Memorize)
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9
2. We should persist in prayer because God promises that our labor in him (including prayer) is not in vain
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:58
3. We should persist in prayer because Jesus promised us if we keep asking, seeking and knocking we will receive an answer
And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Luke 11:9-10
4. We should persist in prayer because we can’t see all that God is doing through our prayers.
When the servant of the man of God rose early in the morning and went out, behold, an army with horses and chariots was all around the city. And the servant said, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” He said, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” Then Elisha prayed and said, “O LORD, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the LORD opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. 2 Kings 6:15-17
5. We should persist in prayer because God has abundant blessings stored up for us
Oh, how abundant is your goodness, which you have stored up for those who fear you and worked for those who take refuge in you, in the sight of the children of mankind! Psalm 31:19 (Memorize)
6. We should persist in prayer because since God did the big thing (saved us), he encourages to ask for other lesser things
I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it. Psalm 81:10
God told Israel: Hey, I am the Lord, your God. I delivered you from slavery in Egypt. I saved you from Pharaoh and his army. You could never have done that yourself. Now, if I did this big thing, do you not think I will feed you? Open your mouth wide – ask me for big things, anything, all your needs, and I will fill you.
God saved us from our sins and Satan. We were dead in our sins. We could never have saved ourselves. So if God did the big thing, let’s open our mouths wide – ask him to save your children and descendants. Ask him for that job. Ask him to provide all you need. If God saved us he can do anything else we ask.
7. We should persist in prayer because our prayers delight God and he delights to answer them.
The sacrifice of the wicked is detestable to the LORD, but the prayer of the upright is His delight. Proverbs 15:8 (Berean Study Bible)
If our prayers are delightful to God, he takes pleasure in answering them. When God answers our prayers it brings him glory. It produces (or should produce) thanks and praise to him. God is no Scrooge, clinging to his blessings. Our God delights to pour out blessings. Our God is the lavish God who didn’t create just one kind of tree or butterfly but thousands and thousands.
8. We should persist in prayer because God promises to reward those who seek him in faith
And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. Hebrews 11:6 (Memorize)
9. We should persist in prayer because God promises that he hears our prayers and will answer them
And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. 1 John 5:15
10. We should persist in prayer because God cares for us and invites us to cast all our cares on him
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7
11. We should persist in prayer because God is good to all who wait for him, and patiently seek him
The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:25-26 (Memorize)
12. We should persist in prayer because Jesus himself told us to persist in prayer and not give up
And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’ For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, ‘Though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.’” And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” Luke 18:1-8
13. We should persist in prayer because our God is a loving Father who loves to bless his children, who loves to give good gifts to his children
If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him! Matthew 7:11
Most parents love to bless their children. I probably spoiled my children when they were little. And even now, I love to bless my children and grandchildren. How much more does our heavenly Father give good things to us when we ask him.
In all these wonderful promises, God encourages us to persevere in prayer. So whatever you are seeking from God, don’t give up. Don’t quit asking him, no matter how impossible it seems to you. Our God is a faithful God. He doesn’t lie, or forget or change his mind. He will keep his promises to us.