Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. ~ Luke 18:1
In the movie, A Christmas Story, Ralphie asks for a Red Ryder B.B. gun 28 times. The story spotlights his antics to get his most prized gift for Christmas. He is without a doubt one persistent little boy. In Luke’s Gospel, Jesus tells the story of a widow who was just as persistent as Ralphie. She is relentless in her pursuit of justice. And she continues to badger the judge until he finally gets tired and relents.
Persistence. It is something that is lacking in our culture today. We used to be a nation that prided ourselves on being relentless, never giving up. But our level of persistence and commitment has waned over the years. We persist in very little…our marriages, disciplining our children, our careers, our dreams, our exercise plans…you get the idea. And we lack in our persistence in prayer.
Jesus told this parable of the widow to encourage us. He wanted us to be persistent. He wanted us to press in and press on. And He equated our persistence in prayer with faith. Jesus said, “Will I find faith on the earth when I return”? He made a connection with our level of faith and our passion for prayer.
Ouch! When I think of it that way…when I contemplate the connection between faith and prayer, I wonder just how much faith I truly have. My prayer life becomes an indicator of my level of faith. If Jesus is saying our faith will determine our prayer life, then some of us will be found waning in faith.
This Advent take an inventory of your persistence in prayer. Is it waning? Are you passionate? It may be that your faith is waning too. Ask the Author and Finisher of your faith to increase your passion and trust in Him. As your faith increases, you will find your desire for prayer will increase too.