Molly our dog gets fed twice a day, once at 7:15 am and then again at 5:15 pm. But from about 6 am and 4pm onwards she begins to whine. Once you notice her, she will immediately run to her bed and sit up to show us how good she is! Her expectation is that she is being so good she should be rewarded with an early meal. Of course our answer to her every time is; “No, it’s not time for you to be fed. You have to wait!” Even though she gets told this several times in the hour before feeding time, she still continues to do the same thing every day. You would think she would learn she needs to wait till it’s her time to eat. But day after day it’s the same routine. It is funny to watch her go through her routine every day, hoping that at some point someone will cave and give in to her whining. But she always has to wait.
Sometimes we have the same attitude when it comes to our Heavenly Father and to prayer. We ask the Lord for things that we want, and we want them right away. Then when our Father says no or says wait we begin to whine, “God does not answer our prayers.” We can become tempted to stop praying altogether, instead of persevering.
In some ways, Molly is like the persistent widow in the parable Jesus told to show the disciples that they should always pray and never give up (Luke 18:1-8). She is certainly persistent and never gives up reminding us that the time to be fed is almost at hand. But she is also a reminder that the Lord does know what is best for his children and so sometimes that means having to wait or even to be told no. The Lord makes us wait sometimes because he wants the best for us. But what we are asking for is not the best thing for us, even if we think that it is. Sometimes we have to wait because it is not the right time for us to receive what he wants to give us.
For the most part the daily antics of Molly are met with a smile and a laugh, though there are times when it is a little frustrating. But when it comes to our Heavenly Father, He never tires of listening to our prayers, even if his response is “you have to wait!”