Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 18:1-8.
Jesus told his disciples a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary. He said,
"There was a judge in a certain town who neither feared God nor respected any human being.
And a widow in that town used to come to him and say, 'Render a just decision for me against my adversary.'
For a long time the judge was unwilling, but eventually he thought, 'While it is true that I neither fear God nor respect any human being,
because this widow keeps bothering me I shall deliver a just decision for her lest she finally come and strike me.'"
The Lord said, "Pay attention to what the dishonest judge says.
Will not God then secure the rights of his chosen ones who call out to him day and night? Will he be slow to answer them?
I tell you, he will see to it that justice is done for them speedily. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?"
Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB
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God, our only teacher of prayer
Saint John Climacus (c.575-c.650), monk on Mount Sinai
The Ladder of Divine Ascent (trans. Archimandrite Lazarus Moore; cf. coll. Spiritualité orientale no. 24, pp. 290.299-300 rev.)
Prayer by reason of its nature is the converse and union of man with God, and by reason of its action upholds the world and brings about reconciliation with God; it is a bridge over temptations, a wall against afflictions, a crushing of conflicts, future gladness, boundless activity, the source of graces, invisible progress, food of the soul, the enlightening of the mind, an axe for despair, the annulling of sorrow, the reduction of anger, the mirror of progress, the realization of success, a proof of one's spiritual condition, a revelation of the future, a sign of glory.
Have great courage, and you will have God himself for your teacher in prayer. Just as it is impossible to learn to see by word of mouth because seeing depends on one's own natural sight, so it is impossible to realize the beauty of prayer from the teaching at others. Prayer is learned by praying and it has a Teacher all its own: God, who teaches knowledge and grants the prayer of him who prays and blesses the years of the just.