May the Lord give you grace, peace and health in the Holy Spirit. It is on 16th October 2022. We celebrate the 29th Sunday in Ordinary time. We reflect on Exodus 17:8-13; 2 Timothy 3:14 – 4:2 and Luke 18:1-8.
Perseverance in prayer brings us closer to God. God never ignores the prayer of the poor person.
What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear.
What a privilege to carry,
Everything to God in prayer.
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry,
Everything to God in prayer.
Two ladies planted olive trees in their backyards. Right after planting the trees, one prayed, dear Lord, send rain to grow, and sunshine and frost to make it sturdy. God gave everything she asked but finally, the tree died. While the other lady’s olive tree was booming and blossoming. The lady who lost the tree asked how that could be. In reply, the latter one told her: I too prayed but I said that you made these trees. You know what they need. Just send what is best.”
The best is given to us in prayer. The readings suggest that prayer brings victory, blessing and protection. Then why don’t we pray enough to be blessed, successful and protected?
A seven-year-old boy asked his friend: do you say a prayer before you eat? The friend answered, “No, I don’t have to. My mother is a good cook.” If we only pray, when there is an imminent difficulty, then it is not a prayer at all.
At times our prayers could be exciting and uplifting for some of us but many of us could we feel it can be boring and exhausting. Holding up ourselves to God in prayer. It is the moment of hanging on with God as God is the only hope and answer to what we ask for. The psalmist places the entire trust in God saying, “I lift up my eyes to the mountains: from where shall come to my help?” (Ps.121:1) We are assured by the intercessory prayers. “The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. The Lord will keep your going out and you’re coming in from this time forth and for evermore.” (Ps.121:8)
Charles Spurgeon says, “Whenever God determines to do a great work, God first sets God’s people to pray.” This is what happened in the first reading. The untiring prayer of Moses and the effort of Joshua brings victory over the Amalekites.
St. Paul reminds Timothy the need for sharing the Scripture in season and out of season. “Proclaim the message; be persistent whether the time is favourable or unfavourable; convince, rebuke, and encourage, with the utmost patience in teaching.”
Prayer with patience, penitence, persistence, perpetuity, and perception strengthens us to accept the plan of God in our life.
Perseverance of the widow encourages us to keep asking God until we obtain it. God cannot be compared to the unjust judge. Our God cares for us when we pray. Delaying our request is not a sign of denial with God. On the contrary, God promises to serve justice on time. “I promise you; God will see justice done to the poor and done speedily.”
When prayer becomes a burden and boring, our faith remains frozen. “But when the Son of Man comes, will he find any faith on earth?” When prayer has no place in our life, what has left within faith?
The disciples asked a saint, “What is the greatest sin?” They asked. The monk smiled and said, “Not stealing, lying, and cheating are the sins alone. On the contrary, the greatest sin is not to live and pray as a Christian? That is why the first charity to my country is to pray for my country says King Louis IX who had an unshakable faith in God in prayer to lead the nation successfully.
Someone said once: “To talk with God, no breath is lost, Talk on! To walk with God, no strength is lost, Walk on! To wait on God, no time is lost, Wait on!” May we continue to be in prayer to be blessed in His mercy. God bless you.