Our scripture today is Luke 18:1-8.

Then Jesus told them a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart. He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor had respect for people. In that city there was a widow who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Grant me justice against my opponent.’ For a while he refused; but later he said to himself, ‘Though I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice, so that she may not wear me out by continually coming.’ ” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them. And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”

This parable is a little difficult to understand without some thought. It revolves around a widow who represents those who have no power in society, her only weapon was persistence. The unjust judge lacked fear of God and respect for people, two essential qualities for anyone in a position of responsibility. However, because she is persistent in her pleas he eventually grants her justice.

This is similar to the teaching about good gifts. In Matthew 7:11 Jesus says ”If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask him!“ If the unjust judge was compelled to render justice, how much more will our Heavenly Father readily give to us?

Jesus says we should be like this in our prayers. Continual prayer isn’t pestering God but a sign of our trust in Him. Unlike the unjust judge, God wants justice for us; however our idea of justice and His are often different. God grants what we need, not necessarily what we want.

Gracious God, thank You for being available to us through prayer. Help us to be like the persistent widow in our faith, focused on justice not just for ourselves but for all Your children. Amen.

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