Our faith community of St. John the Baptist, founded on the word of God; welcomes all with charity and love….both the strong of Spirit and those who search. As part of the Universal Church, we acknowledge that God has uniquely blessed everyone with abundant gifts. We celebrate the differences that make all of us equal in the eyes of the Lord….using our blessings to provide all who join us in Eucharist with a heart-felt sense of family and communion. For the Lord has brought you to our door….you are a stranger here but once.
October 20, 2019
10% Inspiration, 90% Perspiration
We’re a get-rich-quick society. Gone are the days of Puritan work ethic, and inspiring examples of “hard work pays off”. Daily we’re fed a diet of instant wealth, overnight success stories, leaving the impression that “miracles” take as little effort as a microwave dinner. We expect fame, fortune and fulfillment to appear overnight. And this belief in microwave miracles bleeds into our relationship with God. We’ve only got to ask, for it to be instantly given, right?
God, the Father of all true miracles, tells us a different success story. In the parable of the dishonest judge and the widow, Jesus teaches us that persistence, good old stick-to-it-iveness hasn’t lost it’s power. Throughout our lives, we are to pray without becoming weary, continually holding our petitions up before the Father. It isn’t a vending machine faith we’re part of: drop in a prayer dime, pull an answer from the slot. It’s a slow, hard working, sweaty browed life of faith, where only prayer persistence can break through the obstacles in our path. With God we can do anything, but even prayer depends on 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration.
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Pray and persist: Never lose heart
Imagine a parable with one purpose: to teach people that “they ought always to pray and not lose heart.” Such was the parable Jesus told about the stern judge who was bothered by a nagging widow who felt she had been taken advantage of. The feisty little widow kept coming and coming before the judge insisting that she be given justice. Finally, becoming weary of her persistence, the judge granted her what she wanted. Is God like that stubborn judge who wants us to petition Him until He relents and grants us what we desire? Hardly. God loves us and wants the best for us. Still, it is important to pray persistently… not to persuade God to see it our way; but to help us to “get it right,” to see it God’s way; to understand what God is already doing in the situation. “God,” said Jesus, will “vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night” (Luke 18:7). But it does take prayer, persistence, and never losing heart.