Day 16

True Blessedness

from the Luke reading plan


Luke 11:1-54, Isaiah 55:6-7, Romans 8:14-17

BY Guest Writer

I was home alone one evening when someone started knocking at my door. We have a rather unwelcoming “No Solicitation” sign posted on our door, and it was past the time for a postal delivery. And yet, the knocking persisted. Generally, I don’t answer the door when I’m home alone, but I peeked around the corner and saw that it was our friendly neighbor, looking exceptionally apologetic.

“Do you have a corkscrew we could borrow?”

We did, and I gave it to him, and sincerely told him to knock anytime.

The parable Jesus tells in today’s reading is about a persistent neighbor, only this one is knocking and knocking and knocking at midnight, after the whole house had already gone to bed. Some commentaries call this parable humorous, a quality we don’t always assign to Jesus’s words, but in this case, the story plays out a bit like a sitcom.

A man and his family are asleep in bed, when a neighbor starts knocking. Eventually, the man gets up, begrudgingly, not out of the kindness in his heart, but because of his friend’s “shameless boldness” (Luke 11:8).

The point Jesus is making is not that we should be hospitable at all costs, even dragging ourselves out of a warm bed in the middle of the night to give our neighbor some bread. He’s telling us we should approach God with the same shameless boldness of the knocking neighbor in the parable. Some translations call it the neighbor’s “impudence,” or “shameless audacity.” These are not words I typically think of when I pray.

I am learning, however, to be persistent in prayer, praying the same things over and over again—not out of disbelief, but out of belief and faith. Every night, I pray the same words over my daughters: “Please show them how much You love them. Give them hearts that love You, eyes that see You, ears that hear You.” It’s not laziness, but persistence. Over and over, I ask, seek, and knock at God’s door in prayer.

Jesus’s illustration of persistent prayer follows the Lord’s Prayer, a tangible example of how we should pray every day. His answer to the disciples’ request, “Teach us to pray,” is two-fold. First, pray for things like these. Second, pray persistently.

Yesterday, in Luke 10, we read about how Jesus came to reveal the Father. Today, He shows us how we can speak to the Father. Jesus invites us to know Him. And through Him, we’re invited to know the Father, too, to pray to Him without ceasing.

May we ask, seek, and knock with persistence and faith, knowing that God will always answer for the good of all those who love Him, and to make known the riches of His glory (Romans 8:28; 9:23).

Melanie Rainer is a bookworm from birth who makes her days writing, editing and reading in Nashville, where she also joyfully serves as the editor of Kids Read Truth. She has an M.A. in Theological Studies from Covenant Seminary, spends as much time as she can in the kitchen, and can’t wait until her two daughters are old enough to read Anne of Green Gables.

Post Comments (53)

53 thoughts on "True Blessedness"

  1. S S says:

    I simply love this message! I have never heard commentary like this on these verses and it is like a lightbulb has gone off in my brain. I need to be persistent with God about the deepest desires of my heart. Much like the audacious neighbor, I too need to knock repeatedly. Lord I am praying that my husband will know You. That he will enter into a relationship with Jesus and see Your truth. It is something that I have been praying for nearly 6 years, but never with the persistence that this story showcased. Lord, may you hear these desparate prayers, may you grant one of the deepest desires of my heart. I will keep knocking, I will keep seeking, I will keep at this until this promise is fulfilled, until the door is answered.

    1. Mindy W says:

      I am joining you in this prayer today!! Keep the faith sister!

    2. Summer Chavez says:

      Amen!

  2. Kelly Chataine says:

    Thessalonians 5:17 states that we should pray without ceasing. To always have the attitude of prayer and keep the line of communication open between us and God.

    Remember, from an earlier study, that when we say, Yahweh, we are speaking God’s name with or through our breathing. You must breath in to say “Yah” and exhale to say “weh.”

    1. Hope Sewell says:

      ❤️❤️love this word picture!

    2. Amber Turnbull says:

      Thank you for sharing this. I sat for a few minutes hand to chest saying Yahweh repeatedly and feeling the in and out. Praying we experience God’s permeating presence in everything…even our breathing.

    3. Theresa Mitchell says:

      Wow. Actually breathing Gods name is a concept I didn’t realize. Thank you for sharing this insight. I love this thought and now have a completely different reaction to the name of God as Yahweh.

    4. Jennifer AndersMiller says:

      I never realized that about saying Yahweh. How cool!

    5. Malynda 'MJ'Gamble says:

      I love that!

  3. Brittany Holmes says:

    We persistently prayed for my son Judah to be saved. He even started praying for it, not really understanding the full weight of his prayer. We kept adding the request to the prayer list and bringing the request before God at all hours of the day. A few months ago, the eyes of his understanding were opened, and He accepted Christ. I can’t tell you how on fire my 6 year old is! I love this passage that we should passionately Pursue God and audaciously beg of Him.
    His kingdom come! His will be done on earth as it is in heaven

  4. R H says:

    What a big passage! I love how Jesus invites us into relationship with God the Father through prayer. And to keep on asking in prayer! I also appreciated the commentary from He Reads Truth which talked about the response to the Woman in vs 27-28. God invites us into relationship with God through the Word also. (Aside- anyone else read the men’s commentary too? HRT has some great writers and I quite like the style they write with).

  5. Angie says:

    In my life, sometimes God has been bold and clear in His answers (and I must obey immediately), other times I’ve waited and prayed, prayed and waited and still I have not been positive of the path He longs for me to take. Sometimes I think He has a direct will for me, other times I believe I may have more of a choice. So how do I know what to do?

    For me…I spend extra time in His Word and in prayer. I drown myself in Him hoping that the saturation will pour into me and then out of me.

    The Lord’s prayer, prayed and checked in my spirit also helps me check my motives.

    Our Father who is in heaven
    your name be honored as holy. (Is my first priority be honor and glorify You, God?)
    Your kingdom come, your will be done (Do I really want Your will and Your kingdom, if it means I don’t get what I want?)
    Give us each day our daily bread (Is this about daily bread, or wanting more so I don’t have to rely daily?)
    And forgive us our sins, as we also forgive everyone who sins against us (Do I recognize I am a sinner, saved by grace? Do I offer the same forgiveness to others that I would expect for myself? I know the Sunday School answer but what do the depths of my heart live?)
    And do not bring us into temptation (God, if this thing that I want an answer to will bring me into temptation to do evil, to sin against You, or hurt my witness, will I walk away?)

    When I’m not just saying the Sunday School answers,
    when the words in my prayers penetrate with purity and selflessness,
    with the motive of worshiping and honoring my Savior and my God,
    then I know, that I Know, it will be okay, no matter the answer
    yes…no…wait

    This is a journey we are blessed to be on,
    not because it is always easy,
    but because HE IS ALWAYS FAITHFUL.

    1. AnneLyn P says:

      Thank you. Appreciate this reminder.

  6. Tina says:

    Mine was not a persistent knock on the door, but the ringing of the telephone at around 3am.. aside from waking me up disorientated, confused and filled with a feeling of dread, I had to run downstairs as I have no phone upstairs, and with each step down I must have gone through a hundred scenarios of who what where and how….
    I answered to hear my friend say, “I know its late, but please pray…..’ as the story unfolded I knew I had no choice but to pray…

    I tell you this… why?

    I am no prayer warrior, in fact praying out aloud in a group, up until recently, has been a no no, yet, this friend thought me worthy to trust to pray, to join in her prayers for the Lords hand over her family’s story, she had shameless audacity through the nudging of the Spirit to called at an ungodly hour..

    My friend boldly trusted that I would do what she asked, that I would intercede on her behalf, that my prayers before were persistent prayers, bold and trusting that God and I have a ‘red phone’, a direct line..

    As I sat into the wee hours holding my friends family up in prayer I knew I was in the presence of my God.. I knew that we were communing, that his will was being done and that I was growing in faith as I asked, sought and knocked on the Heavenly Fathers’ door to make known the absolute riches of His glory..

    Thank you Lord God for your gift of prayer and conversation with you. Thank you that we can come boldly and persistent in our prayers.. that we can, out of our belief, faith and hope in you call out over and over and over again, persistent knowing, believing and in faith that you have ‘got this’. Thank you Lord God, Thank you for everything, thank you..

    Happy Tuesday dear hearts.. with hugs. Xxx

    1. Janet C says:

      This was a beautiful testimony that even in our own awkwardness of how we pray, when our lives are lived out that others see our faith they know they can call on us to pray. Thanks for sharing

  7. Alice Carroll says:

    How do we know when God has said ‘No’ to our request, and when should we carry on being persistent?

    1. Julie Whitacre says:

      There have been times when an apparent “no” has actually been him calling me into a deeper, more real, conversation and struggle with him. He wants to win back our whole hearts, and there are layers that are hidden to us: layers that don’t fully believe in his goodness, or trust his strength. He knows this, and tenderly calls us deeper, not to shame us, but to overcome every lie and replace it with the truth. which is Himself! Praying that he would tenderly draw you into deeper waters of faith & love as you continue to cry out to him! Much love to you, sister❤️

    2. Kay Coughlin says:

      What a great question! I keep praying until I am fairly certain I have heard a big and definite “no” from God. And then I thank Him for giving me a clear message.

  8. Monica Sprague says:

    Oh, pray as the Lord taught us to pray persistently! Makes perfect sense now,

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