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The Hardest Prayer

The Son of Man shall come on the clouds with great power and glory. (Mark 13:26)

The Son of Man shall come on the clouds with great power and glory. (Mark 13:26)

As we celebrate Christ’s first coming, we also look forward to his second coming, when there will be no more death, no more pain, no more tears. (Revelation 21:4)  We often pray for God’s kingdom to come and, indeed, we are urged to do so throughout the New Testament.

But if our circle of loved ones includes those who reject or neglect our Lord Jesus, then our prayer takes on a whole different and horrifying dimension.  When we pray for Christ’s return, we are also implicitly hastening the point of no return for them, the time when they will face eternal death, relentless pain, unending tears.

This is very hard.

I have found possibility and hope in what the apostle Peter said when he comforted those who were impatient for Christ’s second coming:

“The Lord is not slow to fulfil his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)

Yes, that is where we find the courage to pray this most difficult prayer; we find it in God’s patience and unfailing goodness.

And when the double-edged prayer for Christ’s return once again becomes too hard for us to pray, when Satan once again succeeds in distracting us from God’s compassion—then we can join that desperate father in Mark 9:24 who cried out,

“I believe; help my unbelief!”

May God be merciful to us, to our loved ones, and to the whole world!

And, yes, my dear reader, he is:

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

For more encouragement see Raising Homemakers, Titus 2 Tuesday, Tell it to Me Tuesday.


  1. Jenn says:

    There are many people whom I love who need to come to repentance. The tension is real. I long for Christ’s return, but not before their conversion.

    1. Annie Kate says:

      Yes, exactly. Sometimes the tension is just too wearing for words. I pray your loved ones will turn to the Lord soon.

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