Eight years ago, I came to a point of crisis in my prayer life. We had lost two teenagers who were very involved in our youth ministry, watched our pastor face serious health issues, and traveled a difficult road in our marriage because of all the ministry stress we were facing. Joining my husband in praying with a family during a hospital visit, I was ready to see God move. When I later found out that the little girl had died despite our prayers, turmoil ensued. "Why bother praying?" I said. My husband, facing his own questions, had this answer: "Because God says so."

Telling them of the widow and the unjust judge (Luke 18:1-8), Jesus admonished His disciples to be persistent in prayer. Interestingly enough, He ends His lesson by saying, "But when the Son of Man, returns, how many will He find who have faith?" (v.8). Countless times I have allowed the outcome to determine my level of faith, rather than letting my faith lead me to a deeper understanding of prayer.

Unable to escape circumstances, we allow them to blind us, and, subsequently, we lose sight of the battle. Daniel, however, submitted to God's will. In doing so, he refused to be moved from his declaration of faith in the power of God. He knew God would answer (Daniel 10:12-19). In 2 Corinthians 5:7 we read, "We live by believing and not by seeing." Imagine the turn of events if Daniel had given up when the answer was delayed!

The enemy wants to keep us focused on self and distracted from the battle. While unconfessed sin and unforgiveness keeps our prayers from being heard (Isaiah 59:2; Matthew 6:15), we can know God hears when we submit to His will and remain immovable in our faith (1 John 5:14-15). , Regina Franklin, Our Daily Journey

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