PRAYER BEST UNDERSTOOD takes the long perspective and requires our patient perseverance. How do we become more patient? First, we remind ourselves that God is patient with us. A recurring refrain, found throughout the Old Testament, says this clearly:
“The Lord is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.” Psalm 145:8
…Patience is the friend of intercessory prayer. Without patience, intercession cannot do justice to the God who is gracious and merciful or to the person “standing in the need of prayer.” Patience allows the divine will and purpose to unfold. When we are prone to premature closure, patience sees the possibility of a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17). Patience also makes a space for confession and repentance, reconciliation and a new covenant.
We may pray for individuals over the course of days, months, or years. When we do so, we pray patiently—steadfastly but patiently. We do not lose heart (Luke 18:1).
- Kenneth H. Carter Jr.
“Pray for Me”
From pages 86-87 of “Pray for Me”: The Power in Praying for Others by Kenneth H. Carter Jr. Copyright © 2011 by Kenneth H. Carter Jr. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.
For whom are you praying? Share your thoughts.
But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap; he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the descendants of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, until they present offerings to the LORD in righteousness.
Malachi 3:2-3, NRSV
This Week: pray for those who struggle to forgive. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.
Did You Know?
Now in 19 languages and distributed around the world, Prayers for Encouragement offers spiritual care and hope for people suffering from HIV/AIDS. Join us as we offer support to World AIDS Day.
This week we remember Nicholas (December 6).
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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