You need to persevere so that…you will receive what he has promised. Hebrews 10:36
Ruth Bell Graham was a diligent mother. With a husband frequently on the road preaching the gospel and five children at home, she had to be. Her eldest son, Franklin, was the child who required the most diligence. He smoked, drank, stayed out late at night, and showed little interest in spiritual matters.
Many nights Ruth couldn’t sleep from thinking about her son. So she turned to God in prayer. “Every time I pray especially for him,” she later wrote, “God says: ‘Love him…’ which seems odd because I love every bone of him. But God means show it. Let him in on the fact. Enjoy him. You think he’s the greatest, let him know you think so.” Though she didn’t approve of Franklin’s behavior, she consistently displayed her love for her wayward son.
Ruth’s diligence was rewarded in 1974, when Franklin poured out his heart to God, confessed his sin, and turned away from his former life. Today he is president of the Christian relief organization Samaritan’s Purse and is the president and CEO of his father’s ministry, the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
The Lord will respond to our diligent prayers for our family in His timing, not ours—but when we persevere in doing the will of God (Hebrews 10:36), we can count on His promises for a hope and a future with Him.
- Shirley M Dobson
Illustration adapted from Being a Great Mom, Raising Great Kids by Sharon Jaynes (Chicago, Ill.: Moody Press, 2000).