While doing the dishes the other night, Arwen (our 60 lb Lab) was insistent about playing. She would bring me her ball and drop it while I stood at the sink. I would kick at the ball, and she in turn would chase the ball across the kitchen floor and into the dining room. After a while, it became difficult to play and wash dishes, so I said to her, “No more. Go lay down.” But, she would not; instead she repeatedly picked up the ball and dropped it at my feet, looking up at me each time with those big brown, hopeful eyes. So consistent were her efforts, that eventually I paused my chore and finished the game.
Arwen’s resolve reminds me of how important persistence actually is to the believer’s faith. In Genesis 18, the Lord shares with Abraham: “The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me. If not, I will know.” (vs 20-21) Abraham’s response is both humble and persistent. He asks the Lord if there are fifty righteous people found in Sodom, will He spare it? The Lord says he will. Forty-five? Yes. Forty? Yes. Thirty? Twenty? Ten? And the Lord says yes.
Our persistence should match Abraham’s. The Lord is willing. We must have the humble faith to continually, persistently come before Him and ask Him for the big stuff—the salvation of not just one person but for cities and even nations (Psalm 2).