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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Prayer and Faithfulness

Many years ago, my husband Kenn partnered with two other men in a farming business. We knew Clyde was a trustworthy man; we attended the same church. Sam, a local businessman, put up most of the money. We agreed the three men held equal responsibility should the business go broke. I wasn’t sure we could trust Sam.

Within two years, the business dissolved. The main reason was Clyde. He misrepresented himself and the product he endorsed. He skipped town, and to my knowledge, he never paid his debt. So much for thinking he was trustworthy.

How would we pay Sam back? We were a young family with two small children. We calculated 20 years of payments. Bankruptcy was a choice, but after praying, we sensed that God wanted us to pay our debt.

The Lord soon provided Kenn with a new job, and we paid Sam $2,000 per year. After two years, I prayed, “Lord, You know our faithfulness and how we have continued to pay Sam back. We have not cut back on our giving to the church or Your work. At the end of five years, I pray Sam will forgive the remainder of our debt.” Most days I prayed this prayer. I asked the Lord to give Kenn boldness to talk with Sam and ask him to write the balance off after we paid him back $10,000.

That didn’t happen. After three more years of continuous prayer and asking the Lord for this specific need, we received a letter in the mail from Sam. The letter stated, “Thank you for not forgetting about our business venture that did not do very well or your obligation to the note. I do not feel you owe me any more money. Please consider your portion of the note ‘Paid in Full.’” We paid $9,500 of our debt. The Lord answered my prayer $500 early, and Kenn didn’t have to ask Sam to forgive our loan. God moved upon his heart without our interference. Sam, the person I didn’t trust, turned out to be a generous and forgiving man.

This experience taught me two things. First, I learned that persistent prayer works, and God doesn’t always answer the way we pray. He often answers better.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6 NIV

The second thing I learned is that we please God with our faithfulness. We continued to pay our debt to Sam and give our tithe and offerings to our church and the Lord’s work.

“Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” 2 Corinthians 9:6 NIV

I believe God granted us a wonderful blessing through persistent prayer and our faithfulness in giving.

Are you persistent with your prayers and faithful in your giving to the Lord’s work?

Copyright © 2019 LuAnn Edwards, used with permission.

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