One day Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them they should always pray and not give up (Luke 18:1). He spoke about a widow who kept returning to an unjust judge, seeking justice against her adversary. The judge ultimately granted her request because of her persistence. Jesus concluded the story by saying, “Will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly” (Luke 18:7).
Well, maybe not always quickly. There is the story of Daniel, who once had a vision about a great war. Sensing that it was important that he understood its meaning, he went on a prayer fast. Three weeks after he had begun, an angel appeared to him saying: “Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days” (Daniel 10:12-13). What would have happened if Daniel had given up before the angel appeared?
We need to take a leaf from Daniel’s book, persevering with prayer and fasting until our prayers are answered. But we must also persevere with other things, especially in faith. After he told the parable of the persistent widow, Jesus asked a seemingly unconnected question: “However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8)
It won’t be long now before the Lord returns. We are in the last hours of the last days, and Jesus told us it wouldn’t be easy. After warning about earthquakes, famines, and wars, he said all nations would hate us because of him. “At that time,” Jesus said, “many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved” (Matthew 24:9-13). Let us be counted among them.
Finally, we need to persevere in doing good. Paul wrote: Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up (Galatians 6:9).
There is a huge harvest awaiting all of us who don’t give up, so let our choice today be: I choose perseverance.
God bless you.