Persistence in prayer

Archimandrite Ephrem Philotheos

In an evangelical parable we see that a widow bothered with her insistence because she vexed the judge who had no fear of God or shame of men but who did justice to her, meaning that he defended her and escaped her of injustice. Did you see what did the unjust judge do? After much insistence and disturbance cause by the woman, in order to get rid of that, he fulfilled her request. If this judge who did not fear God came to fulfill the request of the widow because he was bothered by her insistence, the more it will be done by our Heavenly Father who will fulfill the requests of His sons!

This is what we must do ourselves! To ask, to pray, to knock at the door of God’s mercy and we shall receive an answer. That’s why let us have courage, let us have faith and never cease to ask in prayer what concerns us, regarding our sins and passions or even our life matters. Prayer brings so many good things to the person who prays when he has the steady belief that he receives an answer.

When God descended from Thabor Mountain there came the father of a lunatic child, fell on his knees at Christ’s feet and said:

`My Lord, please have mercy on my son, because he is lunatic and he suffers badly. I brought him to Your disciples but they couldn’t heal him. Have mercy on us and if possible help us!

The Lord answered:

`If you can believe that I can heal your child, everything is possible for the person who believes.`

That one fearing that he might not have had enough good faith to see his son healed, says tearfully to the Lord:

`I believe, my Lord, please help my unbelief. Strengthen my faith so that it becomes strong and see my child healed!

Then the Lord admonished the evil spirit and after that one shook the child hard, got out of him, leaving him as dead. Christ took him by the hand, raised him up and gave him to his father. [1].
And when we have our requests, our needs, when the sin tempts us, when the passions challenge us and make us suffer, let us kneel down wholeheartedly and cry – if possible to cry when praying – and our requests will be listened by God.

We see that David in the 140th psalm which is sung at the Vespers says:

 

`I call to you, Lord, come quickly to me;    hear me when I call to you.`

 

Lord, I call You, I cry your name from the bottom of my heart. May the words of my prayer be listened by You and please fulfill my requests.

[1] Matthew 17, 14-20; Mark 9, 17-27; Luke 9, 37-43.
[1] Luke 18, 1-8.

Excerpt from the book The art of salvation, to be published at Evanghelismos Publishing.