Jesus told his disciples a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary.
“Can you help me with my math?”
It was about 9pm. I had just finished cleaning up after our family meal (it was that kind of day). I walked into the living room, plopped down in the recliner with a long sigh. I was hoping to zone out in front of something on netflix for a bit before going to bed. And the question came. “Can you help me with my math?”
I was weary. Physically weary. My feet and back ached. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy to get out of the chair!
I was mentally weary. I had crunched numbers in the morning and had meetings through the afternoon and evening.
I was emotionally weary. Part of the day had been spent listening to and praying with people who were suffering. I was drained.
But I had barely talked with my son all day. I had been running from one thing to the next. He had been running too. Even at supper I was in my own little world. The better part of me knew that I had to get up and try to help him. My son was important, even though I wasn’t sure I could be very helpful (I love math but its been a while since I’ve done algebra!) I knew that simply standing beside him and supporting him as he did his math would make a difference. He needed me to be there to ask a few questions to keep him focused. The relationship was what was important, not my math skills.
Sometimes my prayer life is like that too. After a long day I often feel too tired to pray. Sometimes I’m physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted. But I know it is important to spend time with God. It is the time spent in relationship that matters.
I think that one reason Jesus urges us to “pray always without becoming weary” is so that we spend time with him every day. Its not always about what we bring to our prayer. Sometimes it is simply about showing up, even if we are weary.
Lincoln A. Wood
Very often a man or a woman who dared to pray alone in a church has been, by their perseverance, a living appeal to others. It only takes one for many to be drawn along in the end.
Br. Roger of Taize
Be steadfast of heart, and keep going forward!
Following Christ with a steadfast heart does not mean lighting fireworks that flare up brightly and then go out. It means setting out, and then remaining, on a road of trust that can last our whole life long.
Br. Roger of Taize
I am not a mechanism, an assembly of various sections.
And it is not because the mechanism is working wrongly, that I am ill.
I am ill because of wounds to the soul, to the deep emotional self,
And wounds to the soul take a long, long time,
Only time can help,
And patience, and a certain difficult repentance,
Long, difficult repentance, realization of life’s mistake,
And the freeing oneself from the endless repetition of the mistake
Which mankind at large has chosen to sanctify.
“Healing” by D.H. Lawrence
Love is always patient and kind; love is never jealous; love is not boastful or conceited, it is never rude and never seeks its own advantage, it does not take offense or store up grievances. Love does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but finds its joy in the truth. It is always ready to make allowances, to trust, to hope and to endure whatever comes. Love never comes to an end.
1 Cor. 13.4-8
“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves… Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”
Patience is not waiting passively until someone else does something. Patience asks us to live the moment to the fullest, to be completely present to the moment, to taste the here and now, to be where we are. When we are impatient, we try to get away from where we are. We behave as if the real thing will happen tomorrow, later, and somewhere else. Be patient and trust that the treasure you are looking for is hidden in the ground on which you stand.
Henri J.M. Nouwen