And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart.

Luke 18:1

Joan Liggins grew up in a home filled with anger and violence. As a teenager, she attended wild parties and when she found herself pregnant, she married the father of the child. But Joan had no love for her husband, and the dull life of raising a child at home did not compare with the party scene. Soon Joan divorced her husband and went back to her partying ways. When Joan’s life hit rock bottom, she entertained thoughts of ending it all. And that is when God reached down and saved Joan Liggins, and transformed her heart and life.

Joan was convinced that she needed to ask forgiveness of her ex-husband and ask him to remarry her, which amazingly, he did. What a beautiful story this would be, if God would save Joan’s husband as well. But God’s ways are not our ways and God’s timing is not our timing! They have been married for nearly 50 years, and Joan is still praying for her husband’s salvation.

In the verse above, Luke tells us the intent of the parable Jesus is about to speak: “Believers ought always to pray and not lose heart”. You, like Joan Liggins, may have prayed for your husband’s salvation for many years, or for your child’s salvation, or you may have prayed that God would remove a severe trial from your life. And it seems as if God is not listening. Nothing seems to change. And you are tempted to lose heart and believe that all your prayers are in vain; that if God is real, He is unconcerned.

But, dear believer, know that that is a lie from the father of lies. God’s love for your unbelieving spouse is far greater than your own. His love is perfect. And, in a mysterious way, He uses our prayers to accomplish His purposes. Jesus, who knows the heart of His Father perfectly, encourages weak and struggling sinners such as us, to keep on praying! According to Joan Liggins, the fact that God has not yet saved her husband, only energizes her prayers for him. May God help us to trust Him, and to keep seeking Him in prayer, knowing that He will answer in His perfect way, and in His perfect timing!