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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Written by Renée Miller

Wednesday, September 30

Then Jesus told them a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart.
—Luke 18:1

There are times when we become discouraged. When we feel as if we've been trampled by misfortune. We wonder if there is any solution to our problems. If there is any hope knocking silently on our door. If there is any possibility that our heart will have its wrinkles and kinks softened so that we can feel the blood pumping through it again.  

We may pray but find that the words are empty. We’ve ceased to believe that the words really make any difference at all. The prayers we’ve faithfully offered have not kept us free from the pain we suffer. How can they help us now? 

We may be looking for God to miraculously alter our situation, and deep-down think that our prayer is the offering God requires. It’s not the prayer itself that has the capacity to change the situation. The prayer itself does not entice God to look our way.

The prayer is a symbol of our intent to believe, to trust, to stay in the place of hope. In fact, the prayer is the very thing that restores our heart to wholeness even in the midst of the struggle.

When we affirm our belief, our trust, our hope, we are astonished at the change. In the moment between discouragement and prayer, we are affirming that we belong to God. That affirmation ushers us right into heaven’s embrace and without the slightest effort, we find our heart filling with promise. Filling to overflowing.  

Gracious God, when hope seems distant, and my heart empty, let me whisper a prayer that will restore my belief and fill me with hope.