And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’ Luke 18:1-3 ESV
For the last 23 years in nursing home ministry God has helped me to learn a lot about prayer. Though you may have never set foot in a nursing home you will discover that prayer requests are remarkably the same everywhere. People in nursing homes battle with depression, fatigue and loneliness around the holidays like everyone else. As an outreach worker you often ask yourself; “What is my small faith in the face of such needs?” Jesus gives us some answers in the story that He told about a widow and a judge.
First, she built a relationship with the judge by going to see him every day. Every day as he sipped his morning cup of tea, he would hear a knock. When he went to open his door there the widow would be again asking; “Give me justice in my dispute with my enemy!” Maybe he even began to anticipate her visit and prepare for it. In our case we pray, not to some uncaring local magistrate; but to our Father in heaven. He is loving, merciful and kind. Why not begin where the widow began? Why not come every morning with expectant faith; knowing that Jesus is eagerly waiting to hear our knock on His door. Learning to pray for others means persistently building our relationship with God and then trusting Him to meet their needs.