[Jesus] said: “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 what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”
Wearing Out Your Opponent
If you’re going to be victorious in an athletic contest, it helps to have more skill than your opponent. But having superior skill doesn’t necessarily guarantee victory. Other factors play into who wins and who loses.
One strategy that less-skilled players and teams employ in order to beat a superior opponent is to turn the game or match into a test of endurance. They may have better players, but if you can wear them out with your plodding game plan, you might be able to beat them.
That’s the very lesson Jesus is teaching in his parable of the persistent widow. This woman is seeking justice from her local judge. He doesn’t care about her case, but she wears him out with her persistent pleading, with the judge finally exclaiming, “Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!” Persistence pays off.
Anyone who has ever begged their parents to buy them something special, only to have their persistence pay off with the item they so desperately desired, knows of what Jesus speaks. If we nagged and nagged, wearing our parental “opponent” down, we’d receive our reward.
If an uncaring judge could be won over with patient persistence, imagine what will happen when you patiently persist in praying to your loving heavenly Father for your needs. After all, he is the one who was willing to meet your greatest need by sacrificing his own son to save you from your sins. Surely, he will respond in whatever way is best when you persistently pray to him for your needs.
Heavenly Father, give me the persistence I need in prayer. Amen.
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