Luke 18:1-8 (MSG) Jesus told them a story showing that it was necessary for them to pray consistently and never quit. He said, There was once a judge in some city who never gave God a thought and cared nothing for people. A widow in that city kept after him: ‘My rights are being violated. Protect me!’ He never gave her the time of day. But after this went on and on he said to himself, ‘I care nothing what God thinks, even less what people think. But because this widow won’t quit badgering me, I’d better do something and see that she gets justice—otherwise I’m going to end up beaten black-and-blue by her pounding. Then the Master said, “Do you hear what that judge, corrupt as he is, is saying? So what makes you think God won’t step in and work justice for his chosen people, who continue to cry out for help? Won’t he stick up for them? I assure you, he will. He will not drag his feet. But how much of that kind of persistent faith will the Son of Man find on the earth when he returns?”
I love the way God chooses to reveal Himself to us when we “sit still” and truly listen for His voice. As I draw closer to God, He has really given me a burden to pray for (intercede on the behalf of) others. Typically when God wants me to pray for someone He puts their face in front of me. What I mean by this is, I see a picture of them in my mind. He (God) will do this throughout my day or even in the middle of the night.
Have you ever had God wake you up in the middle of the night to pray?
To be honest, the first few times He woke me up with a burden to pray for someone in the middle of the night I really questioned if it was Him or just me having some sort of dream. Let me just tell you that I have been blown away when I find out that my prayers came just at the right time (yes – even in the middle of the night) for the person I was called to pray for.
I love the story told in Luke 18 of the persistent widow. In this story, a widow consistently – persistently – comes before this judge (day after day) asking him to grant her justice because her rights had been violated. Because of her persistence, take a look at how the judge responds:
“But because this widow won’t quit badgering me, I’d better do something and see that she gets justice—otherwise I’m going to end up beaten black-and-blue by her pounding.” (MSG Luke 18:5)
This woman was not going to give up until something happened. I believe she would have gone back to this judge until her feet couldn’t carry her anymore…and the judge knew that.
In this same passage of scripture, Jesus ensures all of us that if we are persistent, God will hear our plea as well
“So what makes you think God won’t step in and work justice for his chosen people, who continue to cry out for help? Won’t he stick up for them? I assure you, he will.”
If an unfair judge responds after constant pressure…how much more will our loving heavenly Father respond to us?
As I continue to walk out my faith, I must constantly keep my requests before God and believe that He will answer (when His timing is right…not mine). Furthermore, when I am persistent in my prayer life, I know I grow character, faith, hope, and most importantly…closer to Him.