Over this past week, I learned that I tend to get impatient with God. I often want to see immediate results to my prayers and spiritual growth. The amazing thing is, God doesn't get impatient with me! He sets up a lesson and then gently guides me as I discover something new and awesome. This week I discovered long suffering in my prayer life.
It started on Tuesday, I was having a discussion with my friend Jared about various things, and I expressed my frustration with how few people had responded to a the technical missions project flier that was sent to all the churches in the Oregon conference. I knew that God has a plan for this project, but it just seemed like it was moving so slowly!
The next day I received numerous requests for information about the project. I was amazed, and encouraged, but God still had something more for me to learn! That evening, Sarah and I where discussing some of our concerns about how long it is taking to get our apartment above the garage finished, when we decided to look up various verses on patience. We read James 1 where it talks about having patience during trials, and I was thinking about that in the context of the addition and Sarah's concerns. I missed the lesson He was trying to teach me.
Friday night during our visit with Jarad and Constance, we where talking about the power of prayer, and it's affect on opening spiritual doors of opportunity. We discussed how prayer, is vital to inviting the holy spirit to work in the lives of people, and about the time that Daniel was praying and the angle was delayed by a spiritual prince! It was because of Daniel's persistent prayer and patience that enabled Michael(Jesus) to help the angel fight off the prince. I started thinking about that over the next couple of days, and this morning in my worship it became crystal clear that God had a message for me, and that He was trying to tell me this all week! I was reading in Luke, and when I came to chapter 11 I was like OOOH I get it! Chapter 11 is lukes rendition of the lords prayer, but Luke adds a parable about the persistant friend that comes in the middle of the night to ask for bread. The man in the house didn't give the friend bread because he was his freind, but because he was persistant and bold in his request.
I need to be more persistant in my prayer life, but I also must be patient and have faith that God hears my paryers, and will give me what I need!