Twenty-second Sunday after Pentecost
October 20, 2013
The journey of prayer
A widow is pressing the judge for justice. We don’t know what the injustice was, but her persistence tells us not to give up asking in prayer for what we need. We may not receive what we want or when we want it, but prayer is having faith that justice will eventually prevail.
Prayer is a letter we mail off, and prayer is waiting for a response that comes back in parts.
Prayer is a coffee break that we take each day with a divine friend. We share what is going on with us, and as we listen to the other person’s point of view, our perceptions about ourselves and the world deepen. We grow in understanding and compassion. Prayer is a relationship that gets better if we nurture it each day.
Prayer is being on a journey. This passage follows Luke 11, where Jesus said to pray for what you need today. During a long hike on the Pacific Crest Trail, we cannot carry everything we will need for a journey that will take months, but we are physically able to carry what we need today, and this is what we ask for in prayer. Prayer is a cool breeze on a hot day. Prayer is an adventure, because on the trail we don’t know what we will encounter around the next bend. There could be a mother bear with her cubs, or a mountain lion, or the trail may open to a stunning view over a river canyon.
Another aspect of the widow’s story is her grief. Jesus said that if we search, we will find. The widow is not letting things happen to her. She is taking charge of her recovery. She goes out and gets what she needs.
As we travel into unknown territory, we trust God to guide us where to go. We travel with holy intention on a search that may take years, but prayer is not an answer. Prayer is a journey, and prayer is our companion along the way.
Mark Liebenow, member of the Moravian Diaspora