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Bill Hybels tells about an interesting experience after a baptism service in their church. He writes: “I bumped into a woman in the stairwell who was crying. I thought this was a little odd, since the service was so joyful. I asked her if she was all right. She said, ‘No, I’m struggling.’ She said, ‘My mom was baptized today. I prayed for her every day for almost 20 years. The reason I’m crying is because I came this close to giving up on her. At the 5-year mark I said, “Who needs this? God isn’t listening.” At the 10-year mark I said, “Why am I wasting my breath?” At the 15-year mark I said, “This is absurd.” At the 19-year mark I said, “I’m just a fool.” But I just kept trying, kept praying. Even with weak faith I kept praying. Then she gave here life to Christ, and she was baptized today. I will never doubt the power of prayer again.”


Sometimes when we pray and pray we feel like we are experiencing the law of diminished returns — so we stop praying. We correspondingly diminish our desires and dreams. We stop believing that God cares and that he will act — that he is indeed a God who wants us to ask. I hope that you will trust God’s love and concern for you, and his ability as well. I hope that you will continue to be persistent in prayer, no matter how discouraging the circumstances seem.

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