How long? (Job 19)

“Mom, how looooong do we have to keep praying this same prayer?” my daughter moaned dramatically as I tucked her into bed.

For as long as she can remember she, and our entire family, has prayed for my eyes to be healed. (It’s a long story, but very, very serious.)

To tell the truth, I feel her pain. Only I’ve been praying this same prayer for decades longer than she has been alive. When, Lord, are you going to answer?

Job, from the Bible, wondered this same question as he sat in the ashes of his life, scraping his boils with a piece of broken pottery, listening to his friends accuse him of some mysterious sin and wishing that he had never been born.

“Though I cry, ‘I’ve been wronged’ I get no response; though I cry for help, there is no justice.” (Job 19:7)

From where Job was sitting, God had abandoned him and if we closed our Bible’s right there, we might be inclined to agree with him. However, Job’s story wasn’t over. Time continued to pass, Job continued to plead his case to the Lord, and just when it seemed that God was never going to answer him, we read some dramatic words:

“Then the Lord answered Job…” (Job 38:1)

If you’ve ever had to pray for something for a long, long time (and who of us hasn’t) these words in Job should provide us the capacity to keep praying. At just the right time, and in just the right way, God will answer us, just like He answered Job. Keep praying.