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"Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up." - Luke 18:1
I recently did a Bible study with a friend of mine at school on the topic of faith, specifically praying with bold faith. I want to take the time to share with you several of the points that we covered.
What is bold faith you may ask? Bold faith is having the faith to continually pray for something you desire to come about in your life. It's having the faith to bug God about a strong desire that is on your heart. This desire could be one that is physical, such as extra money for certain things, or spiritual, such as a friend getting baptized into Christ. Bold faith is praying without ceasing. It's praying when it seems as if God doesn't exist because he's not moving the way you want Him to. It's praying when all Hell has broken loose in your life. It's praying when you don't feel like talking to God.
Bold faith is something that I feel like we don't talk about enough in the church, but it's referred to quite a bit throughout the Bible. You can't please God without faith. And what is faith if it's not bold? This is the essence of Christianity, in my opinion.
Now, I'm sure most of us know the timeless faith-without-works-is-dead-scripture. I want to take this scripture even a step further to say persistent faith without works is dead. If you're someone who has read this scripture repeatedly, I want to challenge you to ask yourself 'How often am I applying this?' Faith that God will move mountains in your life without persistent prayer (and other actions) is dead.
The key word in all of this is persistent. This doesn't mean praying every once in a while, or when it's convenient, or when you feel like it. It means praying like there's no tomorrow. And this also means that you shouldn't give up on God just because you prayed for something for a week and it didn't work out. Sometimes God takes months or even years to do things. God promised Abraham and Sarah a son in their old age, but he wasn't born until 25 years later. Remember, God is not a genie. He rewards those who earnestly seek Him in their waiting. Be patient my friend.
Matthew 7:7 says, "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you." I want you to pay particular attention to the word seek. This word usually involves a connotation of searching. And that is searching earnestly. The Bible is not referring to asking once or twice, but a continuous seeking of the outcome you are looking for. God wants to bless people who seek Him, and not people who give up hope easily. You ought to knock until God opens a door in your life, but he definitely will not open any doors if you stop knocking. This is bold faith.
It's what the persistent widow did in Luke 18. She asked and asked until she got what she deeply desired. Verses 6-7 say, "And the Lord said, 'Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?...'" Will God not bless you if you repeatedly ask Him for something? Of course! You shouldn't be afraid to bug God. But remember results are often not immediate. God is not a genie, and you have to come to trust God enough that in His timing your prayers will be answered.
I say if you don't want something bad enough to keep asking until you get it, you don't want it bad enough, and maybe you really don't deserve it!