Sunday, June 23, 2019

Nancy Hughes: Praying as long as it takes

“I prayed for this child, and the Lord has
granted me what I asked of him.”
I Samuel 1:27 (NIV)

I loved tucking my small children into bed at night. All I have to do is close my eyes and I can still smell the scent of Ivory soap on freshly scrubbed little faces as they snuggled into sheets that had been drying on the line outside. But perhaps the most fun of all was bowing my head with them as they said bedtime prayers.

Children have a way of stating simple but profound truths and I have no doubt that God smiles and lovingly focuses on each one. On one particular evening I listened as my seven-year old son asked the Lord to watch over an elderly neighbor who had not been feeling well for a few days.

Next my almost three year old asked God to help her catch Penelope, her cat, so that she could, in her words, “put my doll clothes on the poor, ole thang.” The last one to pray was my five year old. She put her little hands together, closed her eyes, and prayed with all her heart “Lord, Lord, when I grow up, help me to find the right man!”

I could not help but smile at her precious request of God as I kissed them all goodnight and shut the bedroom door. But before I could take two steps, the Lord spoke clearly to my heart: “Why are you smiling? That is exactly what you should be praying every day for your children.”

Instantly I was convicted of that huge responsibility and fervently prayed my sweet daughter’s prayer for a mate over each of them from that moment on.

Scripture tells us that Hannah had prayed fervently to become pregnant and God had granted her request. But what encourages me is that she didn’t pray once or twice and then sit back, waiting for an answer. I Samuel 1:3 says that year after year she and her husband went go to the sanctuary at Shiloh to worship and each time Hannah begged God for a child. Year after year after year.

Are you daily lifting up the future spouse for your son or daughter? That should be one of your first prayer requests each morning and the last one before you go to bed each night, year after year. We are encouraged in I Thessalonians to pray continually and to joyfully wait for an answer, even if it takes weeks or months . . . or years.

The Lord answered Hannah’s persistent prayer with a son that she named Samuel. And, in case you are wondering, He is answering my prayers for my children, too. Both of my daughters are married to Godly men who love the Lord and their families.

Join me in praying – as long as it takes – for Christian spouses for our sons and daughters.

Father, may I continue to be faithful in prayer, no matter how long it takes, for my children and their future spouses. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

R.A.P. it up . . .


Have you given serious thought to the spouse that your son or daughter will one day marry?
Are you willing to pray as long as it takes to ask the Lord to bring the right person into their lives?


No matter the age of your child, spend one minute each day asking God to bring a Christian spouse into his or her life.

Periodically share Scripture about a Godly spouse with your child and pray with them that God will bring that person into their lives in His timing.


I Samuel 1:27 (NIV) “I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him.”

Galatians 6:9 (NIV) “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

I Thessalonians 5:17 (NIV) “Be joyful always; pray continually . . .”

(For more of Nancy Hughes' writing, eheck out her blog, Encouragement from the War Room.)

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