Podcast Worship

Daily Prayer for 12 November 2022

Listen to a service of Daily Prayer for 3 before Advent: Saturday, 12 November 2022, including a reflection on the gospel reading


O Lord, open our lips
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Blessed are you, Sovereign God,
ruler and judge of all,
to you be praise and glory for ever.
In the darkness of this age that is passing away
may the light of your presence which the saints enjoy
surround our steps as we journey on.
May we reflect your glory this day
and so be made ready to see your face
in the heavenly city where night shall be no more.
Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God for ever.

Luke 18.1-8 
The Parable of the Widow and the Unjust Judge

Jesus told his disciples a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart. He said, ‘In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor had respect for people. In that city there was a widow who kept coming to him and saying, “Grant me justice against my opponent.” For a while he refused; but later he said to himself, “Though I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice, so that she may not wear me out by continually coming.”’ And the Lord said, ‘Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them. And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?’ 


Today’s reading is most commonly referred to as The Parable of the Unjust Judge, but the story really revolves around someone who existed on the very edge of 1st century Jewish society – a widow. 

We know two things about widows in the time of Jesus: firstly, widowhood presented sometimes insurmountable challenges, both economically and socially, and, secondly, God’s people had been told time and time again to care for the widow and the orphan. The widow in today’s parable stands out because she does not wait to be ‘cared for’, but stands up for herself in the face of an uncaring society.

The judge in Jesus’ parable wanted to ignore or refuse, but the widow, in her turn, refused to take ‘No’ for an answer. She was determined, like so many others down the ages, to be resolute as she journeyed the path of prayer, action and faith.

So many times I have heard preachers focus on the unjust judge or the persistent ‘nagging’ of the widow. They have twisted Jesus’ parable so far out of shape that its real meaning has been lost. This parable is not about militant protest or any other human-centric reaction to injustice, it is about prayer.

As we pray we plead to God for those we love, for those who are sick, for a world that is hurting because of violence, injustice, exploitation, oppression and untimely death. And, when God does not seem to be listening, when we feel that our cause is being ignored by the world and by the Church, our prayers become more persistent. We should emulate the widow and not be cowed by the indifference of the world. We should remember Jesus’ words at the end of today’s reading: And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry out to him day and night?

In those moments when we feel abandoned, lonely and lost we need to cling on to the reassurance Jesus offers. We will be heard by God. The persistence of our faith through prayerful devotion will align our voices with that of God, the one who is Lord of all, including those who are excluded from society through no fault of their own.

Let us pray that we might not forget that Jesus is present in every moment and that he makes himself known to us through prayer. Let us pray that we might commit ourselves afresh to seeking him in all things. Let us pray that we might listen for his call in our lives and that we might follow that call for the rest of our days.


In the power of the Spirit and in union with Christ, let us pray to the Father.

Let us praise Christ our King, by whose cross we have citizenship in  heaven, saying: all your saints praise you.

Lord, you built your Church on the foundation of the apostles:
all your saints praise you.

You witness to your truth in the lives of your saints:
all your saints praise you.

You made us to be a kingdom and priests serving our God:
all your saints praise you.

You have shared our burdens,
revealing the holiness of our life and work:
all your saints praise you.

You stir us to seek the mysteries of the kingdom:
all your saints praise you.

You lead us to the eternal assembly of the saints:
all your saints praise you.

God of holiness,
your glory is proclaimed in every age:
as we rejoice in the faith of your saints,
inspire us to follow their example
with boldness and joy;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Uniting our prayers with the whole company of heaven,
let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever.

Christ our King make us faithful and strong to do his will,
that we may reign with him in glory;
and may the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among us and remain with us always.