I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth. ~Luke 11:8
Many years ago, Sir Winston Churchill was invited to speak at the commencement exercises for a leading Ivy League college. When it was time for Mr. Churchill to speak, he got to the lecturn and looked over the large, overflowing crowd. Then he said, “Never, never give up!” He repeated again, “Never, never give up!” A third time he exclaimed, “Never, never give up!” Then he walked back to his seat and sat down. That was his commencement speech! That’s what our devotion this morning is all about: never, never give up when it comes to prayer. We are meditating on the importance of persistence, or importunity, in our praying.
We see the EARNEST in importunate praying.
Being earnest in our praying is putting all of you into the praying. It is approaching the throne of grace with a sense of urgency. It is praying with the knowledge that only God can answer the prayer. It is praying in faith—believing that unless God answers the prayer, you are in trouble. It is praying where there is no Plan B! It is like Jabez who prayed, “Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast!” It is praying that is determined to get a hold of God, and will not let Him go until He answers us. It is praying that insists that God must do something for you.
We see the ESSENTIAL in importunate praying.
We must not miss this. Importunate praying keeps asking, seeking, and knocking. In the lesson Jesus taught, a man went to his neighbor at midnight to ask if he could borrow some bread. Even though it was midnight, he came. Even though his neighbor was in bed, he kept asking. James describes this kind of praying as “the effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man.” This kind of praying stays up through the night. This kind of praying “prays through” until the answer comes. This kind of praying is steadfast and unmovable for an intended result. This is praying without ceasing. It is laboring fervently in your prayers for others.
We see the EXAMPLES of importunate praying.
There is the example of Abraham when he prayed for the deliverance of his nephew Lot from the city of Sodom. Abraham negotiated with God for Lot’s deliverance! Abraham prevailed upon God until he got the desired answer. There is the example of Elijah praying over the lifeless body of the son of the widow woman. He went alone into the room where the lifeless body lay, prayed for God to give him back his life, and stretched himself across that body three times. There is Jacob wrestling with the angel of God and telling him, “I will not let thee go, except thou bless me!” Importunate praying begs, craves, demands, and prays until the desired request is met.
We see the EVENTUAL from importunate praying.
The prayer is answered! Lot got out of Sodom! The widow woman got back her son! God restored rain to Israel after a three-and-a-half-year withholding. This kind of praying is praying that changes things! This kind of praying changes us! This kind of praying is how the hardest sinners get saved! This kind of praying is the nobleman walking fifteen miles from Capernaum to Cana of Galilee, and begging Jesus, “Sir, come down ere my child die.” This kind of praying can turn serious medical conditions into healing and wellness. This kind of praying is needed for the right outcome with the raising of our children. This kind of praying is the only kind of praying that leads to revival! This is the kind of praying that pleases God!
Never give up! Don’t be slothful in your praying, nor expect God to answer you for a flippant, heartless prayer. Be determined that the request is so important that you will pray earnestly and with such determination that you will not stop until the answer comes. Never, never give up!
Have an importunate God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Esther 6-10