S57P2 – Lessons from captivity: God will hear our cries
During that long period, the king of Egypt died. The Israelites groaned in their slavery and cried out, and their cry for help because of their slavery went up to God. God heard their groaning and he remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob. So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them.
When they were married, neither one of them was a believer. It was only after an encounter with a colleague and a divine dream that she would start on her road to discovering Jesus Christ. At first, she took these steps in secret. After seeing that He is the real thing, she began to share what she was learning with her husband. It did not take long for him to draw a line in the sand and tell her that she could pursue whatever belief system she wanted as long as she left him out of it. Night after night she would cry out to God for her husband to be saved. Twenty years might be a long time to pray, but it was nothing in that moment when her husband accepted Jesus as his Savior. Discouraged as she might have been through much of that time, she knew that God would hear her cries and fulfill the dream He had given her so many years earlier.
There are several truths to keep in our minds when we are waiting for God to answer prayer. Arguably, the most critical is that God indeed hears our cries. Sometimes our proof of that is instant, and other times is takes years to come about. However, the circumstance of time is no indication of whether God hears our cries. Just as we read today, God hears us and is moved by what He hears. He is compassionate concerning our pleas. When prayers are not answered right away, or not even answered at all, it is not because God has decided to take time off from listening to his children. Some people must wait decades for their prayers to be answered, and that is okay. Answers to prayer can be complicated, but we must remain persistent and confident that our cries will be heard. God will answer one way or another.
God honors the prayers of those who believe in him [Jam. 5:16]. There are things that can hinder our prayers, such as unrepented sin [Psalm 66:18], and we must be vigilant to approach the Father from the correct spiritual posture. As long as we do so, our cries will not fall on deaf ears. We are loud enough to get through to him even when our prayers are too quiet for anyone else to hear. God’s compassion refuses to leave us crying out into nothingness. We can be confident that there is someone waiting to receive our prayers and act on our behalf. Every time we pray we remind God of his faithfulness and his promises to his people, and He will respond accordingly as He did with the Israelites. Father, thank You for always being there to hear our cries, and remind us that the righteous prayer will be heard.