What yearning do you have that you’ve been covering in prayer for a very long time? Should you quit praying it, as a sign of your trust in God? No, Jesus says we should persist in it. Faith means persistent prayer. Why? The answer is in Luke 18 and Luke 13:6-9 (the parable of the fig tree).
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I’d like to share with you the hidden value of persistent prayer. Jesus told us, in Luke chapter 18, about the value of praying always without growing weary. And in Luke chapter 13, he shares this with us–it’s a parable:
There once was a person who had a fig tree. He planted it in his orchard, and when he came in search of fruit but found nothing on it, he said to the gardener, “For three years now I have come in search of fruit on this fig tree and have found nothing. Cut it down so that it will not exhaust the soil.”
But the gardener said to him in reply, “Sir, leave it for another year. I will cultivate it and fertilize it. It may yet bear fruit in the future. If not then you can cut it down.”
What yearning do you have that you’ve been covering in prayer for a very long time? What is your fig tree that you’ve planted in the orchard of God’s mercy? Should you quit praying it? Jesus says, “No! Keep praying, be persistent, don’t grow weary.” Why? Because you’re cultivating the soil. What’s the soil? The soil is the life that produces good fruit through the Holy Spirit.
Persistent prayer, long-term prayers are a good reminder that we cannot accomplish what we want without God’s help. They illustrate our dependence on God. The devil tries to make us conclude that God doesn’t care and that’s why our prayers aren’t being answered. But the truth is God cares so much, he’s cultivating your soil throughout the entire duration of you waiting to see the fruits of your prayers.
But not only that! He cares so much about the people that are involved in your prayer request that he’s is also cultivating their soil. And sometimes their soil takes more time to cultivate because he’s got to get through rocks or other handicaps, other resistances to his help that they’re putting up. But he’s working on it. He is cultivating their soil.
And because you care about these people, you too want to wait for that cultivation to work, to make a difference, right? And then you will see the good fruits come from your prayers and from what the Holy Spirit is doing through you and through other people and through the circumstances that come along during the duration of these prayers.
To fertilize your soil, keep working at it. Keep digging. Dig for what the Holy Spirit wants to teach you while you’re waiting for your prayers to be answered. But in addition to that, pay attention to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Pay attention to be ready for when the Holy Spirit tells you what to say and how to say it. Or what to do and how to do it, to get that fig tree to finally start blossoming and eventually produce good fruits.
So get closer to the Holy Spirit. Grow in your ability to hear the Holy Spirit. Ask the Holy Spirit every day to overcome you with his presence and his life in you.