When You're Tempted to Give Up: A Simple Guide to Not Losing Heart
Updated: Jul 10, 2019
Have you ever read a verse a thousand times, then a phrase seemed to suddenly appear?
This happened as I was reading the Parable of the Persistent Widow (Luke 18:1-8). It’s a parable of a woman who presented her need to a judge who finally granted her request because of her persistence.
Though my intention was to study the parable, I couldn’t get past Jesus’ opening statement: "He [Jesus] told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart” (Luke 18:1).
Always pray. Do not lose heart.
Had that always been there? What did it mean? I quickly pulled out my study books and learned that losing heart speaks of exhaustion, fatigue..... an inner weariness.
We’ve all been there. Maybe you’ve asked God to restore a broken marriage, heal a child, bring freedom from addiction, relief from your stress, supply financial provision, or salvation for family/friends.
We prayed. We believed. We waited.
But nothing happened.
As time continued, our fervor floundered. What once was a daily prayer, turned to a weekly prayer, which became a once in a while prayer, or worse yet - no prayer.
But then I asked myself, How do we persevere? Or persist? How do we ask without losing heart?
Then it hit me.
We miss the source of our perseverance when we forget what prayer truly encompasses.
Prayer, as Jesus defined it, entails rich WORSHIP to God, not just asking (Luke 11:1-2). Consider what happens in worship:
Worship reminds me that God is all powerful - that He loves me and has a perspective I don’t have.
Worship protects my heart against cynicism when God’s answer is delayed.
Worship keeps my face fixed on His faithfulness, rather than my seeming deficit.
Worship allows me the opportunity to be transparent with God about my disappointment, yet balances and sustains me as I recall His faithfulness. My heart may ache because He feels distant, but worship reminds me that His presence permeates.
Worship allows me to walk in peace, knowing the situation has been covered in prayer, and God’s best will result.
Worship fuels persistent prayer!
When I cling to God in worshipful prayer, I proclaim HE is the source of provision. I rest in HIS goodness knowing that through HIM my situation will be resolved in His perfect timing.
Ask yourself: What things am I not praying for like I once did? Is there an inner weariness, anger, or even cynicism? Have I stopped looking to God as the source because He seems silent? Or the answer is delayed?
Infuse your prayer with worship. Find songs that connect your heart to His and let worship underscore your day. I’ll often put songs on repeat until my heart aligns with the truth of the Word, and I come to a place of perfect peace.
Your Father in heaven longs for you to pray and not lose heart...And as we see with the persistent widow, God WILL answer your cry.