Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Putting one foot in front of the other, I intentionally enter a particular room in our home. I close the door. I pray. God speaks; I try to listen. I speak; God always listens. This is our daily routine, God’s and mine.
Jesus speaks about the need to be consistent in prayer through the parable of a persistent widow. Daily she exercises hope by putting one foot in front of the other and approaching the judge. Although the truculent judge regularly denies her pleas, still she walks on without wavering in her quest for justice. Eventually, he shifts his position.
Jesus asks, If this refusing judge who doesn’t even respect God grants the woman justice, how much easier is it to approach the Gracious Judge, the God of Unfailing Love? Jesus takes his disciples, then and now, directly to the crux of the story: pray always and do not lose heart.
Whenever we are affected by a friend’s story, a sermon, what we read, what we see at work, what gets reported on our screens, whether the news comes from across the globe or from across town, it would be our best practice to pray.
As we pray, we participate in God’s love for all the world. As we walk in love, putting one foot in front of the other, Christ conforms us to his Way. Being persistent and consistent, we learn to pray reflexively, as when stepping on something sharp and instantly shifting all weight to the other foot. Immediately. With practice, prayer can become an automatic response. Putting our best foot forward, we can learn to pray, immediately and always, in all situations, and not lose heart.
Darrell Johnson, pastor, Palmer Township Community Moravian Church