Prayer is a mystery to me. I can pray about an issue in my life, or someone else’s, and get an immediate response from God. It’s a ‘suddenly’ that builds my faith tremendously. There are other times when I pray about a matter that seems to me to require that sudden answer but the heavens seem silent. God isn’t moving. Although that way is hard and I don’t like it, my faith is being strengthened.
There is an interesting account of Jesus healing a blind man in Mark 8:22-26. This man had friends who cared about him enough to beg Jesus to heal him. Oh, to have friends like that. People in our lives who will stand with us and pray with such fervency. They were passionate and would undoubtedly have followed Him around until He acknowledged them. They wouldn’t give up. Prayer should be like that.
What was the result of such fervency? Jesus took the man outside the village, away from the crowds, even away from his friends, and did something very interesting. He used spit as a healing agent, the only time in scripture, and with interesting results. Jesus asked him one question, “Can you see anything now?” The blind man answered, “Yes, I see people but I can’t see them clearly. They look like trees walking.”
Often our mindset in prayer is like this. We are fervent, we are passionate, and we expect the answer immediately, as if Jesus is a Coke machine. I have to admit, I have seen many prayers answered that way. I praise God for those quick answers, they built my faith. But other times He makes me wait. Oh, I’ll get a sliver of light now and then to remind me that He’s working on my behalf but no total answer. I feel like telling God, “I only see trees walking.” I don’t see clearly but I do see something. There a hints of Him aligning some things but they are unclear, like shadows. I am like the blind man though; I want total restoration.
Do you see trees walking? Are there fervent prayers that you’ve been praying, possibly for years, and you only see vague indications that God has heard you? Let me be a word of encouragement to you today. He has heard you. You will see a clear answer in His time. Be patient and don’t give up! The answer is worth it. Jesus chose to lay hands on this man twice. Why? We don’t know why but after the second time the blind man’s eyes were opened and he was restored. This is a great example of a progressive answer to prayer. Jesus is asking you today, “Can you see anything now?” Acknowledge to Him that you do see some trees walking. Praise Him for every glimmer of light toward that restoration you are hoping for. He desires it more passionately than you and His timing is always perfect.