Persistence in Prayer

The woman’s persistence paid off, as the unjust judge gave in to her repeated requests. She was tenacious in her pleas and had become a nuisance. While it took a lot of effort on the widow, the judge’s response is one that was borne out of his own selfishness and concern for safety. In contrast, we don’t have to wear out God as our prayers are heard even before we mention these to Him. ‘I tell you, he will see to it that justice is done for them speedily. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?’ (Lk. 18: 8)

We often misunderstand this, that God will answer our prayers very quickly. When there seems to be a delay in God’s response, we find it difficult to accept why there seems to be no answer forthcoming.

Being patient and persistent in prayer are expressions of faith. Thus, when we start to wear out, we should be cautious as it may already be selfishness creeping in on us, such that we may even be putting God in a box and trying to impose our own will on Him. When we do this, we are putting our own limited view of the situation on God, who is omnipotent and omniscient. We forget that He understands all the issues infinitely more deeply than we can ever imagine. In fact, the answer we have in mind may not even be the best solution to our supplications!

Our prayer should therefore be an expression of our faith in Him. When we pray, we should allow His power to dictate the solution and the timing. We should be humble enough to surrender what we want in order to allow God to enter more deeply into our lives.

‘Our help is from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.’ (Ps. 121: 2)

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