Written by Kathy Horn

 

Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. Luke 18:1

 

A careful reading of the parable shows us how we can effectively pray.

In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, "Grant me justice against my adversary."  For some time, he refused. But finally, he said to himself, "Even though I don’t fear God or care about men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually wear me out with her coming!"

And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for His chosen ones who cry out to Him day and night? Will He keep putting them off? I tell you, He will see that they get justice, and quickly.” Luke 18:6-8b

 

First, we can see from this parable that we should pray BOLDLY.  The widow had little social standing and yet she boldly approached the judge.  We boldly approach God because we do have standing—we are His beloved children.

In Him and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. Eph. 3:12

 

Second, we should pray PERSISTENTLY.  The widow repeatedly kept coming to the judge with her plea. She had no other options.  We truly don’t, either.  

Apart from Me you can do nothing. John 15:5b

If we do not boldly persist in prayer then we “are quietly confident that time, money, and talent are all we need in life.  We’ll always be a little too tired, a little too busy to pray.  But if, like Jesus, we realize we can’t do life on our own, then no matter how busy, no matter how tired, we will find the time to pray.”  (A Praying Life by Paul Miller)

 

Finally, we should pray TRUSTINGLY.  The widow boldly persisted in pleading with an unjust judge in whom she had no reason to trust.  Our Heavenly Father loves us so much that He sacrificed His own Son to death on a cross in order to pay the penalty for our sins. His sacrifice gave us the opportunity to be in relationship with God when we trust Him for our salvation.  We can now trust Him to hear our prayers and to answer.

 

The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble.  He cares for those who trust in Him.  Nahum 1:7

As we pray for the needs in our community, may we not give up. Let us pray boldly, persistently, and trustingly.

 

Dear God, our Heavenly Father, only You are able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to the power that is at work within us. Please move in our hearts and give us an even deeper love for our community.  Give us Your wisdom as we expand our ministries.  Give us courage to not only meet physical and emotional needs, but spiritual needs as well.  May this be the year that we each obey your command to go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. In Jesus’ name, Amen.