Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Luke 18: 1 - 8: Sam I am

So what do Dr. Seuss and a widow from a parable have in common? Quite a lot I think. Of course reading the same book 3 times in a row might make you think a lot of things. Green Eggs and Ham is one of Ben's new favorite books. He reads quite a bit. Well by reading I mean, looks through a lot of books. He has his tub of books that he looks through every so often. He'll discover a new one and it will go into the nightly reading rotation. Green Eggs and Ham has just recently attained this status.

After reading it a couple nights, I noticed something. Sam I Am does not give up. He asks over and over again for the narrator to try this food. The narrator repeatedly refuses and then continues to refuse every previous situation as well. Of course we know that by the end of the book he tries it and he likes it. He then says he would eat this food in every one of the previously mentioned situations. In the end Sam I Am shows the narrator that these things are special foods and the narrator is happy about it. He has been ranting and raving throughout the whole book about his dislike for them. Now he loves them.

This widow wanted something different from Sam I Am, but her method was the same, never give up. And it worked for her too. She got justice.

So what about us? We need to persist like the widow and Sam I am. Persist in what? Like verse 1 says, in prayer. That's not it though. Sometimes we need to persist after people like Sam I Am. We need to find new and different ways to invite someone to Jesus. Sometimes we need to invite the same person 20 before they accept, but this is our job as Christians. Let me clarify that a little, we are not to go beating someone over the head with Christ. However, when God puts someone in our path we need to persist in praying for them as well as inviting them to Christ. They may deny us several times. They may remind us why they don't need what we are offering. They might say unpleasant things. But through all of this we need to keep praying and keep finding ways to witness to them. In the book, Sam I Am doesn't use the same tactic over and over and over. He asks once and move on to the next question. He finds ways to relate green eggs and ham to ordinary objects around him. Can't we relate God to what is going on around us?

Sometimes we need to persist in prayer because some hard stuff is going on and we don't get why. Maybe some people seem to be getting all the good stuff and you're left out in the cold. When things like this happen, keep praying. Keep talking to God and listen to him. If you are in contact with him, he will help you see the situation and response. He is also out there fighting for you. The widow got justice from an unjust judge through her persistence. You will get exactly what God has planned for you and you will like it IF you keep in contact with him.

Persistence pays off. It will get you closer to God. It can get you justice. And maybe most importantly it can get other people into heaven.

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