The Persistent Competitor
“One day Jesus told his disciples a story to show that they should always pray and never give up. ‘There was a judge in a certain city,’ he said, ‘who neither feared God nor cared about people.’ A widow of that city came to him repeatedly, saying, ‘Give me justice in this dispute with my enemy.’ The judge ignored her for a while, but finally he said to himself, ‘I don’t fear God or care about people, but this woman is driving me crazy. I’m going to see that she gets justice, because she is wearing me out with her constant requests!’”
"Then the Lord said, ‘Learn a lesson from this unjust judge. Even he rendered a just decision in the end. So don’t you think God will surely give justice to his chosen people who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will grant justice to them quickly! But when the Son of Man returns, how many will he find on the earth who have faith?’” – Luke 18:1-8
What is the worst thing that can happen to an athlete? The one thing that can bring tears to even the hardiest competitor is INJURY! A sports injury can end a sporting career. It can set athletes back for months. It can take away the chance to compete in the sporting event you have been training for years!
Many years ago, while running downslope in a forest trail, I tripped over a rock and had a bad fall. Due to the knee injury, I couldn’t walk properly for six months. Playing basketball was tough even after recovery. Jumping, landing, stopping, change of direction – all those movements that used to be so easy were no longer possible.
The most challenging part of an injury is the rehabilitation process. To have a complete recovery, strengthening exercise programs must be adhered to strictly. It felt like I was back in elementary school, doing exercises that felt so mundane and repetitive. Rehabilitation is a stage that requires a lot of PERSISTENCE. The persistence paid off as I was able to return to competitive sports for many years after that.
For athletes to return from an injury, persistence is vital. We persist because we want to return to competitive sport. We persist because we know that these mundane exercises will allow us to regain mobility, range of motion, coordination, and technical movements. We persist because we know that is the only way back.
In the parable of the persistent widow, she knew that the only way to get justice was to go back to the judge repeatedly. Her persistence gets her justice from a judge that does not fear God nor cares about people. Our God, who is just and cares about us, will surely grant us justice.
Jesus told the disciples this story to show that they should always pray and never give up. How many will He find on the earth who have faith? When we encounter trials in life, do we believe that God wants the best for us and will give us whatever is good for us? Do we turn to God in prayer to deliver us from our struggles? Do we persist in prayer because we know that God’s way is the best way for us?
Our loving Father wants to give us His best, but He also wants us to have total dependence on Him. Let us P.U.S.H. (Pray Until Something Happens) on in prayer in full persistence, knowing that He is the One that can deliver us from all trials in life!
- What are some struggles that you are going through now?
- How can you Pray Until Something Happens (P.U.S.H.)? (e.g. Keep a prayer journal, get a prayer buddy, or join a prayer group).
Romans 8:28; Ephesians 6:18
“Our loving Father, thank You for always wanting the best for me. I know and trust that Your ways are the best for me. Help me to overcome the trials in my life with full dependence on You. Help me to be persistent in my prayers. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!”