Thursday, May 12, 2011

Day 12: Perseverence

Jen FinalI used to think that I should only have to ask God for things once and that should be sufficient.  And really, should I even have to ask at all?  Isn't He omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient?  Clearly He should just know what I need, yes?  Clearly, there is a way and I want to walk in it so He should just tell me already and all will be well, yes?

I remember over four years ago when I was asking God if I should take a job at my church (yes, the same one that I am quitting now -- there is a time and a season for everything) and I felt that He was being so silent about it.  I would pray and not hear.  I would pray and He would be silent.  I would ask and He would not answer.  Finally, one day when both the kids were napping, I laid down on my bedroom floor, Bible opened, and told God I was not getting up until He told me whether or not I was to take this job.  And, through Scripture, He answered me.  I wish I could tell you exactly which verse He used, but whichever one it was, I interpreted it to mean that I could go forward with accepting the position.  One week after I started working, Craig's car broke and we had to get a new (to us) one, which we could only afford with my paycheck.  How's a little confirmation for ya?

My point in all of this is that there is a reason why God asks us to ask and there is a reason why sometimes we have to ask multiple times.  Much of it, I think, points to Him having a relationship with us.  He wants us to ask because He wants the lines of communication to be open.  We are not called to be puppets for His pleasure.  Yes, He desires obedience, but He also wants to engage and participate in our lives with us.  I think He wants earnest seeking, just as He has sought us out from the beginning.

Challenge:  Do you find that there has been a difference for you when you have prayed for a long time about something and it is finally answered versus when you have prayed once and it is answered immediately?  Has it impacted your relationship with God, for better or worse?

FYI, this is something that I still have a lot of questions about myself and I would love for anyone to share their personal experiences in the comments.  My plan is to take several days to unpack this part of the series!

Oh, and today, I'm guest posting today at Heart and Soul.  Click here to read!
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Don't forget about these amazing authors of other "31 Days Closer to..." series:

7 comments :

  1. Hey Jen .... I hope to post your article soon..... might even stay up till midnight (no work tomorrow - yay!) so it posts for Friday here which I think is still Thursday morning over there. Thanks for connecting up and another great post from you here :) Blessings.

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  2. Hi Jen. I don't have any answers as to why God answers the way He does other than to say we have to pray and then rest in faith that one way or another He is there and working all things together... Maybe the quick ones are because we are ready for it and the drawn out ones are because we can't see the bigger picture and what God is all weaving together on our behalf. A bit of pruning and digging deep too maybe. Too many reasons why - just have to believe and have faith. A bit of a jumble of an answer? God bless
    Tracy

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  3. I read a book last summer my a monk who said before any decision, you should pray three days, consult a wise person, and then do what seems right. The three days seems a little bit pinned down but I liked that it wasn't just a one time thing. I'm like you--if I asked for it once, it should be on God's agenda, right? I forget about perseverence. I liked, too, that he suggested prayer and consulting someone as a preparation but then he said just do what you feel inclined to do and trust.

    I think I overlook confirmation pretty consistently. I would have said, Oh that was lucky. Hmmm yeah, I don't think luck is the word we're looking for here. :)

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  4. I want to know if perseverance will be apart of our character in heaven? Will it be needed? And if so my view is heaven is a bit off. :)

    It is interesting how God answers prayers, each different for each relationship. Relationship is the key I think. I like how you pointed that out.

    Also, I know Gods time is not like our time. He is eternal & our lifetime can be but like a moment to Him. Hard to grasp. Then when we layer that with the fact that He is working in the much bigger picture,not just my life - your life...WOW! I am so glad He is God & I can just rest & trust Him!

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  5. PS. I can rest & trust....and at time press in to pray for the things that build perseverance!

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  6. Jen, I sure wish I could find the 'secret formula' for hearing God's answering voice...
    Sometimes it seems He speaks so clearly, so quickly; other times I feel lost, deaf, floundering in the dark. And then there are the times I've prayed & prayed to hear from Him; hearing nothing...nothing...and suddenly outta-the-blue, He 'speaks' into the chaos of the laundry-room, thru the blustering of the wind, in the dark near-sleep of bedtime.
    I guess if there's any secret - it's what you named: Perseverance! I gotta keep pressing in to Jesus, trusting for ears to hear.
    Teri @ StumblingAroundInTheLight

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  7. I don't struggle with hearing God's voice, I have a huge problem with following where he leads. More often than not, He is leading me down the cattle chute right to where He wants me... and I am kicking at His angels and against the goads. I want so badly to just go through the doors that I desire to walk through.

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