Persistent Prayer (9 February 2019)

Morning Encounter:

Read: 

A Widow and a Judge

Jesus told his disciples a story about how they should keep on praying and never give up: In a town there was once a judge who didn’t fear God or care about people. In that same town there was a widow who kept going to the judge and saying, “Make sure that I get fair treatment in court.” For a while the judge refused to do anything. Finally, he said to himself, “Even though I don’t fear God or care about people, I will help this widow because she keeps on bothering me. If I don’t help her, she will wear me out.” The Lord said: Think about what that crooked judge said. Won’t God protect his chosen ones who pray to him day and night? Won’t he be concerned for them? He will surely hurry and help them. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find on this earth anyone with faith?

(Luke 18.1-8)

Reflect: 

The Jews, wary of tiring God with their prayers, tended to limit their prayers to a maximum of three times a day (Daniel 6.10). Here Jesus encourages persistent and committed prayer, especially when we don’t see any sign of an answer. Jesus tells us that prayer is like a helpless widow who refuses to be helpless and stands up to injustice. Her persistence pays off. This kind of prayer is sometimes known as ‘supplication’ which means to ask with earnestness, intensity and perseverance. Prayer for others sometimes requires courageous staying power. 

Respond: 

Are there people or situations that you have been praying for with no sign of answer? Perhaps you have become so discouraged and disappointed you have given up. Is it time to pick up prayer again for this issue?

Midday Meditation:

‘We must repeat the same supplications not twice or three times only, but as often as we have need, a hundred and a thousand times….we must never become weary of asking for God’s help.’ 

(John Calvin)

Evening Reflection:

Watch, O Lord, with those who wake, or watch, or weep tonight, and give your angels and saints charge over those who sleep. Tend your sick ones, O Lord Christ. Rest your weary ones. Bless your dying ones. Soothe your suffering ones. Pity your afflicted ones. Shield your joyous ones, and all for Your love's sake. Amen. 

(Saint Augustine)

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