Devotional for Day 21 – September 21, 2013
Adapted from a devotion by Pastor Jim Botomani Mbewe, Malawi Assemblies of God, Malawi
God is calling on us to pray effectively.
“Then Jesus told His disciples a parable to teach them that they should always pray and never become discouraged.” (Luke 18:1 GNT)
The parable of the persistent widow told by Jesus (Luke 18:1-8) presents us with helpful insights on effective intercession.
The woman comes from a lower status. She had no name in the society. She had no money to pay a lawyer. She had nothing to show. She was completely desperate. The woman had no possibility of a solution to her case except the judge. Likewise effective prayer comes from a desperate person. She was someone with no possibility of a solution elsewhere except from God. Effective prayer presents a believer with his vulnerability and his weaknesses before God. Effective prayer overcomes all forms of self-sufficiency. It comes from a person who empties himself of dependence on his own knowledge and abilities to allow the righteousness of Jesus and the Spirit of God to take over his prayers (Romans 8:26-27). Through such effective prayer, God receives all the glory. In this kind of prayer, He has no competitor.
The woman was denied justice on several attempts, but she did not give up. She kept on knocking on the door of this wicked judge and kept pleading with him. Effective prayer does not give up on God. Unlike this wicked judge, we have a caring and listening Heavenly Father. Though, at times, according to His most Holy and Wise Counsel, He does not answer immediately, but deepens our relationship with Him. He does so to help shift us from being transactional in our approach to being relational. Jesus connects the persistence of this woman with her faith and says to His disciples, “Now, will God not judge in favor of His own people who cry to Him day and night for help?” (Luke 18:7 GNT) Effective prayer focuses faith on Christ, not on us.
Pray this Prayer:
Father, we thank You that You are a loving and caring God! We humbly present ourselves as we are. We confess all forms of self-sufficiency in our praying and our lack of desperation. We allow You to take over. Redirect us and help us overcome all slowness and slackness. We ask You to help us pray with persistence in the power of the Holy Spirit! In Jesus’ name. Amen!
Continue in prayer using the 4 prayer points as the Lord leads you.