And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. – Luke 18:1 ESV
What an important message from God that we need to hear and heed! It is easy in this ‘God forsaken’ world to LOSE HEART. Even when Jesus was incarnate, walking in the flesh with us, HE knew the discouragement we would feel and face. “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. But all these things they will do to you on account of my name because they do not know him who sent me. (John 15:18-21) Look at how our Savior, our Lord was treated, we can expect the same type of treatment.
Leader, the key is to NOT LOSE HEART. God knows our frame, He knows our needs, He knows our weaknesses and He knows that if we lose our power source- THE HEART, then this journeys pain, confusion, and possibility to give up, or give in- is greatly enhanced. God gives us this command to KEEP YOUR HEART engaged in a few areas of the New Testament. Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. As for you, brothers, do not grow weary in doing good. (2Corinthians 4:1; 2Corinthians 4:16; Galatians 6:9; 2Thessalonians 3:13). God knows the Power Source of our ministry and our USABILITY, is to be emotionally engaged. The HEART is the POWER SOURCE. This is also why God tells us to GUARD OUR HEARTS, and to ENCOURAGE each other because He knows our NEEDS and HE KNOWS our STRUGGLES! Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil (Proverbs 4:23-27).
Conduit, It is hard to GIVE from an empty vessel. When we LOSE HEART, we lose our ability to give ENCOURAGEMENT to others. God has called Christians to be encouragers: Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near. (1 Thessalonians 5:11, Hebrew 3:13 and 10:25) In this ever-darkening world we need to KEEP HOPE ALIVE, by keeping ourselves connected to the POWER SOURCE. Prayer is a way to keep connected to God and being constantly reminded of our true purpose and our true calling. America has been moving away from God for decades and this last election was a big discouragement for many true believers. We must keep our HEARTS ENGAGED for God and be encouraged that HIS RETURN IS SOON. Jesus gives us this command in Verse 1 right before He uses 2 parables to make His point. Jesus calls attention to the fact that the parable-teaching immediately to follow was a continuation of what had preceded. Indeed, the connection between the first of the two parables, which urges restless continued prayer, and the picture which the Lord had just drawn of men’s state of utter forgetfulness of God, is obvious. “The Son of man has been rejected; he has gone from view; the masses are plunged in gross worldliness; men of God are becoming as rare as, in the days of Abraham, they were in Sodom. What, then, is the position of the Church? That of a widow whose only weapon is incessant prayer. It is only by means of this intense concentration that faith will be preserved. But such is precisely the disposition which Jesus fears may not be found even in the Church at his return” (Godet). (From Pulpit Commentary) No matter who is in the WHITE HOUSE, what truly matters is WHO IS ON YOUR THRONE! We must be like God and be long-suffering, NEVER losing heart and ALWAYS in Prayer, which keeps us connected TO THE POWER SOURCE, which is GOD, and His Son, our Savior- Jesus!