Pentecost 19, 2022

“There was a widow who kept coming to the judge seeking justice.” We look out over our parishes and there is almost no way you do not have one of these women in your midst. A widow. Jesus grabs probably one of the most ubiquitous classes of people today for his illustrative parable of the unjust judge and the widow who seeks justice. Our world, influenced by the Freudian elevation of sexuality to the preeminent characteristic of our humanity, has largely rendered these women invisible. But if you have done any ministry, you know that these women often form the backbone of service, love, and care within your community.

Jesus tells us that God, who is replete with grace, mercy, and love, has these people in his view. Our world may have rendered them invisible, but they are not invisible to God. The preacher who composes his sermon this week will want to ask himself what God sees in this world, not what the world wants to be seen or what the world deems worthy of our attention. Jesus gives us this parable, according to Luke, so that we have confidence and do not lose heart.

I think that preachers in these difficult days of preaching and serving a declining church will do well to see this world through the eyes of Jesus and the Father. The mustard seed faith of quiet women and men looms large on the divine horizon, much larger than the self-centered pomp and bravado of our world.

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