Persistent praying - Luke 18:1-8

Pray without ceasing!

One of the unexplainable situations that I’ve experienced was when as a young engineer I was preparing on my first ever international business travel to Jakarta, Indonesia. To put things in perspective, in corporate practice, funds are usually released the day before the scheduled departure. Since I was to leave on a Sunday, the release of funds was scheduled to be released on a Friday afternoon. So on a Friday after doing that, I need to drop by the bank to do some transactions. However, it was located in San Juan which is actually nearby but with the horrendous traffic on Friday afternoons, there’s risk of not making it on the 4 o’clock bank closing time. And so, at a little past 3 I started driving towards Greenhills. It took me about 40 minutes to reach the area. Thus I have only a little less than 15 minutes left to get my transaction at the bank. The parking lot was full and so I have to say my prayers to Our Lady to help me find parking. It took only a few minutes of waiting when the car in the slot at my right hand side made a signal that he’s leaving already and so I could take his slot. Is it a “coincidence”? 

While already inside the bank, I saw the security guard guiding a person walking towards me. To my surprise, that person was actually bringing the car keys, which I didn’t notice falling out of my pocket as I took the available slot in the parking area. I couldn’t describe my feelings when it started sinking in. How can I drive the car home when the keys fell out of my possession? I was so grateful to the driver because losing the keys would be another unimaginable inconvenience. Especially that I’d be traveling that coming Sunday and will be gone for almost two months.

So after the expression of deep gratitude, I proceeded with my bank transaction, which, actually expired already after the bank closed at 4 to end the day. But the bank staff told me that they can extend receiving transactions and included me in the queue. What a relief! Another answered prayer!

After completing the transactions, I left the bank and was so thankful to the Heavens for aiding me in what I had to do. But it didn’t end there. As I was in the car and preparing to get out of the parking area, I noticed the bank staff who was handling my transactions waving and running towards where I’m located. What he was bringing to me is my Passport which I didn’t notice dropping out of my office bag. OMG, what is happening to me? Why am I getting very careless so as not to even notice something is missing in my bag? 

The “series of unfortunate events” happening one after the other in the last hour and the corresponding “miracles” defy explanation. But you know what, in each of those instances, I was always quick to call on the power of prayer for heavenly intercession. And the heavens didn’t fail to answer. And they have always rescued me each time. Every time!

In the Gospel (Lk. 18: 1-8), Jesus shared with us the importance of praying always without becoming weary. He talked about the judge, who neither feared God nor respected any human being, and the widow, who used to come to him and say, “Render a just decision for me against my adversary.” Because of the widow’s persistence, the judge did render a just decision for her, “lest she finally come and strike me.” 

Many times in my life I’ve been confronted with challenging and difficult situations. Whether it be career, work-related, family, or just any situation needing speedy solutions, the power of prayer has always been unbeatable. The more important challenges though are those that threaten our souls and thus needing more incessant prayers. The enemy can use our comfort zones to tempt us to be lazy and complacent, sometimes even without us realizing the consequences of the situations we are confronted with. That’s why we need the power of prayer to ensure a Spirit-guided earthly pilgrimage. A currently comfortable situation can turn into something difficult but with God’s grace and help, your soul can be at peace and happy despite the challenge. It is what the saints experience when making the difficult situation a joyful experience.

May we always be prayerful so that we gain access to His peace. May we pray without ceasing so that we will have the capability to defend against temptations. May we follow the inspiration of St. Paul in the Second Reading (2 Tim. 3: 14-4: 2), to be 

“…persistent whether it is convenient or inconvenient; convince, reprimand, encourage through all patience and teaching.”

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

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