What 100,000 Domino’s Teach Us About Prayer


The Story

Bob Specas is about to break the world record for domino toppling.  Its June 9, 1979 and Bob is just a few thousand dominoes away from setting up 100,000 to claim the world record title.  It’s such a big deal that the media has gathered to watch and broadcast this historic event.  Just as Bib was placing one of the few remaining dominoes, on the other side of the room, a careless cameraman dropped his press badge and the room went silent as everyone heard the hiss of dominoes toppling when none should have been.

Can You Relate?

Does your prayer life sometimes feel like that moment back on June 9, 1979.  You work so ard, pray so hard, diligently, consistently, only to wait, watch the exact opposite result happen right in front of your eyes.  Or even worse, you don’t see anything happen…nothing ever happens and you think it never will.  Prayer, as Pete Greig says, is kind of like domino toppling.

“..some prayers get answered the very first time you ask, most take months or even years of faithful asking before you see any breakthrough. Day after day, you say essentially the same thing..and one day, in a matter of minutes it triggers the fulfillment of years of prayer.”

What Does The Bible Say

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer” ~ Romans 12:12

Jesus taught his disciples to be persistent in prayer by sharing the parable of the persistent widow in Luke 18.  I think that parable is even more important to us today.  We live in such a fast paced world that craves and expects instant gratification. I know I do. Don’t you?  There is a story about D.L. Moody carrying a list of names of people he was praying for to choose Jesus Christ as their saviour. The story goes, that almost all had accepted Christ prior to his death…but not all.  BUT, at his funeral the remaining names on the list (4 of them) chose to place their confidence in Christ.

It’s Not Your Time Table That Matters

I admit it, I’m often more concerned with God meeting my expectations and my timeline than being concerned about meeting His. I recently read about a make-believe scenario. Imagine an angel just told you that your next prayer would be answered by God.  Would you pray? Of course you would. Imagine that same angel told you that your 365th prayer was going to be answered. Would you pray 365 times.  Of course. The problem is not that we don’t know how many times we need to pray before God answers….the problem is we are disobeying him by giving up on prayer.  Jesus Himself tells us not to give up. He will bring justice. (Luke 18)

One of my goals during this time of reflection has been to place more and more priority on finding contentment just by being in His presence. Some days its way more difficult than others. I think I’m slowly learning.

By preserving in prayer we prove that we are willing to wait faithfully and to surrender consistently to the priorities of Christ in our lives ~ Pete Greig

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer” ~ Romans 12:12


Bob Specas was able to intervene the cameraman’s mishap. He was able to stop all the domino’s from falling. He was still able to break the world record later that day.

[Image via Louish Pixel | flickr.com]

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So this past new years I caught myself staring out the window praying and asking God for what He thought I should focus on in the coming year. I felt like he said, “people”. In my mind I replied back to Him and said, “but God that’s my job, that’s what I already do every day. My whole job description is about people.” And yet it felt like He just said, “focus on who they are, who I have made & called them to be. Pray that you would see them as I see them. Be more intentional. Don’t be so rushed always.” I agreed and didn’t think much further about it, except that I would try and do so…Then I watched Avatar…

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