Never Lose Heart
Saturday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time
Author: catholic.net | Source: catholic.net
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 18: 1-8.
Jesus told his disciples a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary. He said, "There was a judge in a certain town who neither feared God nor respected any human being. And a widow in that town used to come to him and say, 'Render a just decision for me against my adversary.' For a long time the judge was unwilling, but eventually he thought, 'While it is true that I neither fear God nor respect any human being, because this widow keeps bothering me I shall deliver a just decision for her lest she finally come and strike me.'" The Lord said, "Pay attention to what the dishonest judge says. Will not God then secure the rights of his chosen ones who call out to him day and night? Will he be slow to answer them? I tell you, he will see to it that justice is done for them speedily. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?"
Luke 18: 1-8.
Lord Jesus, my Creator and Redeemer, everything good comes from you. You are the one source of peace and happiness. Thank you for bringing me into existence and insuring I received the inestimable gift of the faith. Thank you for accompanying me in every moment. I am grateful for your mercy and love and wish to respond more generously to you in my life.
Lord, allow me never to tire in my life of prayer.
1. The Widow, the Powerless:
In ancient Israel, widows were often powerless. Back then, women did not earn money; that was the man's obligation. So when a woman's husband died, to whom could she turn for support? She depended either on her sons or on other Israelites to fulfill her needs. Christ uses the image of the widow because he has compassion on the person who is needy. Everyone is needy in his own way. Everyone has virtues he needs to acquire, and sins and vices that need to be cast out. It takes a humble person to realize his inability to acquire these virtues on his own and to resort to begging our Lord for his grace. Do I see my need for Christ in the battle for virtue, or do I work as if he played no role?
2. Cry to Him Day and Night:
This reminds us to pray constantly. We can't reduce our relationship with God to a one shot deal. It isn't something we acquire once and for all and then move on to the next goal in life. We are to call out to him without ceasing, for our life is meant to be in continual dialogue with him. We were created to have a personal relationship with Christ, to seek his will, and then to put it into action. Everything we say, think and do should flow from our continual friendship with him.
3. The Judge, the Unjust:
The judge was indifferent to the widow's distress. This was an injustice. He had as much a duty to listen to her as he had to listen to anyone else. Have I ever been indifferent to a person I had the duty to serve? The judge finally heard what she was saying because she persisted. God wants us to be persistent. He is showing us that we must beg him for his grace. It is as if he treats us as a parent who says, "If my child really wants this from me, he will beg until I let him have it." God wants us to realize we are completely dependent on him. He knows what we need before we ask. However, he waits until we turn to him in prayer and in this way increases our desire for what we request.
Conversation with Christ:
Christ Jesus, you are the way, the truth, and the life. Allow me to live a life completely dependent on you. Turn my prayer into a union of hearts, where I beg you for your love.
I will make an act of humility before our Lord in the Eucharist.