Persistent Prayer
By: Wanda Fielder



     As I walked through my house in the early morning, my attention was drawn outside to a bright spot of color on my still barren hickory tree. I cherish this tree with its beautiful leaves in spring and summer that evolve to the most vivid golden yellow in autumn. The bright red head of a woodpecker drilling away at my beloved tree slightly irritated me.  I watched in amazement at the rapid movement that continued off and on at various locations on the same tree for over two hours.  Although he was from a very lovely species, he was surely going to destroy my tree with his persistent pecking!


     Searching for more knowledge on the woodpecker, I discovered that although the woodpecker can be a nuisance and damaging to the wood on a house, he possibly could be helping to keep my tree healthy.  In his search for sustenance, he was actually sparing the death of my tree from a mass infestation of insects and their grub.  The ash tree actually welcomes the work of the woodpecker removing the annoying beetles from its wood.


     Being a persistent little creature, it is estimated that a woodpecker taps an estimated 8,000 to 12,000 times a day!  Amazing! This astonishing persistence caused me to contemplate our persistence in prayer.  It is not unusual for a prayer to be prayed over and over again before one sees the desired results.  I personally have prayed the same prayer for many months and perhaps years before receiving my answer.  I have often heard the story of mothers who prayed for their children to be saved only for the answer to come long after the mother departed this earth.  Prayers live on forever!  Some species of woodpeckers make a nest hole that offers crucial shelter to other fowls of the air.  Our prayers also become a shelter for ourselves as well as others.

     The tenacious pecking of the woodpecker also helps retain the chisel-like tip on its bill that is necessary to accomplish his purpose in the forage for food.  Just the same our persistent prayer keeps us in healthy spiritual condition to fulfill our purpose here on earth.  We are much sharper in our spiritual walk when we have given our time to a consistent prayer life.  The pretty little woodpecker has taught me a beneficial lesson!




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