We've all been there. Those intense moments when we've poured our hearts out to God and heaven seems ... well, silent!
We know God promises to answer prayer, and there are many verses throughout Scripture inviting us to bring our requests before Him. But when the answers don't come quite as quickly as we expect, it's easy to allow doubt to creep into our thinking. How do we hang in there and allow the waiting to strengthen our faith rather than diminish it? One practice that is effective in helping us wait is clinging to truths promised in Scripture.
Here are three that I have found particularly helpful when I'm waiting for God to answer my prayer:
God bends down to listen.
"I love the Lord because He hears my voice and my prayer for mercy. Because He bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath!"
(Ps. 116:1-2, NLT).
The psalmist reassures us that God bends down to listen to His children. I love this image of God because it reminds me of when I was the parent of four young kids. Sometimes I needed to bend down to really listen, look in their eyes and hear their hearts. This promise assures us that even though we don't see the answer yet, God is a gentle, loving parent who tenderly bends down to listen.
Jesus is praying for you while you pray.
"Therefore Jesus is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through Him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf" (Heb. 7:25, NLT).
It is incredibly comforting to know that while we are pouring out our hearts for a loved one, Jesus is pouring out His heart on our behalf. Not only that, but He loves our loved ones more than we do—so He is pouring out His heart on their behalf as well. When I am battling on my knees for one of my kids or grandkids, I love the reassurance that Jesus is fighting for them as well. What an amazing high priest we have!
Our perseverance pays off.
"So let's not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don't give up" (Gal. 6:9).
You may be bone-weary from pouring out your heart to God, but His Word promises that at the right time, God will answer. As you faithfully persist, He will faithfully sustain you. I believe His Spirit often works in our hearts most powerfully when we are in seasons of waiting.
Friend, take heart. The prayers you've been lifting have not gone unheard.
God bends down to listen as a tender Father, Jesus intercedes with and for you, and the Holy Spirit strengthens your heart as you persevere. You've got the dream team on your side, so hang in there and keep praying! You'll see a harvest if you don't quit.
Becky Harling, an author, certified speaker, leadership coach and trainer with the John Maxwell Team, is an energetic and motivational international speaker inspiring audiences to overcome their greatest life challenges and reach their full God-given potential. Her most recent book is How to Listen So People Will Talk. Her husband, Steve Harling, is the president of Reach Beyond, a nonprofit organization seeking to be the voice and hands of Jesus around the world. Connect with Becky at beckyharling.com, Facebook or Twitter.
This article originally appeared at beckyharling.com.
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