I sometimes wonder what would happen to an athlete when during his/her first training, he/she would face obstacles or failures and thought of giving up so soon. Do you think he would be a great athlete without any hurdles to pass through? Any athlete needs to have determination, willpower, or persistence, but how to have that great willpower? I think prayer makes a difference!
Prayer is one’s fuel for anyone to reach that great momentum of determination or willpower. Prayer enhances one’s ordinary capacity into such exceptional strength. The power of prayer traverses one’s limitations in whatever ways. It is a tool one has to brace oneself before anything else. What could have inspired the disciples of Jesus to confront every challenge that comes their way considering that they are already feeling weary waiting for the coming of the kingdom? What might have kept the spirit of Jesus’ followers who had been deeply agonizing because of injustices inflicted to them? What word of consolations that Jesus’ followers received the moment they were starting to lose heart? I think its prayer!
“Pray always!” “Do not lose heart!” These are powerful words that came from Jesus’ mouth. It is so powerful that it can give great result even at the verge of hopelessness or despair. The story of the widow being narrated by Jesus is a perfect example of such power of prayer. The widow never gives up on her cause for justice even to the point of pestering the judge. She was so persistent that she never had worn out to continually hope that eventually she would get what is due for her. Her hope does not lie on the ‘corrupt’ and ‘shameless’ judge. Her hope lies that, at the final end, she would be vindicated of what rightfully belonged to her.
Prayer brings result! Prayer is what makes the widow to be persistent and not to lose heart. Her prayer bears fruit into faith which sustains her to persevere and not to lose heart. She knows deeply in her heart that her prayer will melt the heart of such ‘hard and cruel’ judge.
What can we learn from the widow’s prayer? Can we still talk about prayer nowadays, even among youth who are so used to ask for instant result? How easy it is to lose heart whenever things do not work according to our plan! How easy it is to give up not just on things but also on people. How easy even to give up what is ought to be done and resort to the easiest way out, the shortcut! The trend nowadays is to get the desired result in the shortest time possible, the immediate!
“Pray always,” “Do not lose heart!” This is an imperative to the disciples of Jesus. This advice is also essential for all of us! Prayer is power! Prayer is like “dripping water [which] hollows out stone, not through force but through persistence”