It was October 2004 and it was the week of my wedding. Our wedding planning happened rather quickly, meaning that my former husband really wanted to us to be married within six months of our engagement because he didn't believe that we needed longer then that to plan.
In hindsight, I probably should have pushed for a year engagement, but I was young and in love and well, it does no good to backtrack now.
It was down to 5 days before our wedding and I was so dang excited! All of the final details had been taken care of and I was so ready to walk down to my forever future as a wife.
However, the weather was putting a major kink into my plans and dreams for our big day.
It was pouring rain. The weather man predicted that it was would be a nasty storm that would last through the rest of the week and wouldn't clear up until Sunday, the day AFTER my wedding.
Call me young and defiant, but I was like "uh-uh". Not happening. I do not want rain on wedding day. I dislike the rainSo I told Dan that I would be praying for the rain to let up so that we could have a beautiful, rain free wedding day. I was told that was not something that you pray for, as there were more important things to pray for, but again, I was young and defiant. Ha! I prayed anyway.
I prayed every day I could that week. Every news station was reporting how this was the biggest storm and there were even flash flood warnings in certain areas. I still prayed. It wasn't necessarily that I believed my day would be ruined because of the rain. I just really didn't want rain on my wedding day.
So I prayed and prayed. Some of my friends laughed at me, not because they wanted to make fun of me, but because of how determined I was to make the rain stop! So, for laughing, I made them join me. #ruthless
By Wednesday of that week, the rain had slowed to a light drizzle.
By Thursday, the rain had stopped.
On Saturday, while the grounds were still slightly damp from the weather, we experienced one of the most beautiful days in October. I walked down the aisle happy as a clam and said I do.
Another example of fervent prayer was when we were living with Dan's parents when Dan was hired at a church and we were in between homes. The commute for Dan was just really hard, and I knew we were going to need to find a home for our little family, and fast.
So I literally wrote on note cards prayers for our home. Specifically, what we needed and desired for our space and what it could provide for us in terms of ministry and haven. I prayed specifically for a house with a little backyard so our children could play (they were in 4th and 1st grade at the time), near a really good school that we could walk to, since we only had one car.
There were a couple of bumps on the way in terms of securing the home, like having the house we were looking at and about to apply for swooped out from under us........but wouldn't you know it that I continued to pray for our home, and that exact house that was not available suddenly became available.
And that became our home for 3 years. Such a blessing and I still love that little place even though we no longer live there.
What is the point of my sharing these stories with you?
I am telling you right now, with all of your worries and cares, with this pandemic and even without it, are you fervently laying your requests before your Heavenly Father?
Do you believe that He cares about you and He hears your prayers?
While this may not work for everyone, at the time it was suggested to me to create a prayer board and place all of my prayers on that board. Since I didn't have a board to utilize at that time, I used my bedroom door and placed all of my prayers on the door. Each morning, before I took the kids to school, I would read those cards and pray. Pray for my kids at their school, pray for Dan, pray for our future home, pray for our finances. I was persistent and I even grabbed the kids to pray with me.
While not every prayer was answered in the way I had hoped, God answered.
Need a great resource? One of my favorite books on this very subject of fervent, specific prayer is by Priscilla Shirer titled Fervent. Absolutely a great read and I know it will get you fired up about your prayer life.
What does the Bible have to say about specific and fervent prayer?
The parable of the persistent widow is a good place start in terms of persistent prayer. Again, praying isn't so that we can just get what we want. I tell you this, because up until a few months ago, I was praying for something very specific until it became very clear that God was not going to answer it in the way I had hoped or envisioned. He answered in a different way. So, I didn't get what I wanted, but God, in His faithfulness showed me a new way and my prayers are changing now. I will share more on that in the future.
Back to our widow.
In Luke 18, Jesus teaches the disciples to pray and not lose heart.
"He said, ' In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a wide in that city who kept coming to him and saying, Give me justice against my adversary.' For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, 'Though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.'" (Luke 18:2-5 ESV)
The unrighteous Judge gave the widow what she wanted because he didn't want to be nagged by her anymore.
However, our Heavenly Father is not nagged by our prayers. When we are persistent, believing that God will be faithful and righteous and answer according to His will, we can go confidently to the throne with our requests, and make them everyday, knowing that He hears, He cares and He will move accordingly in our lives.
So, be specific in prayer. Be persistent in prayer. Pray without fear and discouragement. Even if what I am saying sounds like a broken record to you and you are annoyed by it, I will say it again. God is not finished with us. He absolutely hears us and He cares for you and what is on your heart.
So, don't stress or worry. Instead, pray.
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