I know a young man called William who was looking for work. It is not easy nowadays to find a job when so many are being laid off.
He went to a Bank but was not lucky. He then contacted an Insurance Company but was not accepted. A bookshop did not need his services either.
Discouraged, he sat at home watching television and lamenting the situation.
A neighbour was also looking for employment. He sent his CV with the application form to the same Insurance Company where William had tried his luck. The reply came that they did not need him. He went to their office to meet the manager and was told he had travelled. That young man went back again and again. Every month he appeared in the office and after three months he got what he wanted. His perseverance had paid off: he was employed.
In today’s gospel (20th Sunday of Year A – Mt.15:21-28) we meet a woman who shows that same kind of attitude.
Some people would say that she would not take ‘No’ for an answer.
In fact, she was not even put off by a rather blunt rebuff by Jesus himself who said to her:
“It is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the house-dogs.”
Her reply was quick, witty and to the point:
“Ah yes, sir; but even house-dogs can eat the scraps that fall from their master’s table.”
That woman did not have ‘qualifications’ that would make it likely that her request would be granted.
She was only a woman, a simple, ordinary woman.
And she was seen as a pagan by the Jews of the time since she did not belong to the chosen people of God.
Yet, she kept on asking, and asking, and pursuing the one they called ‘the Master’ until she was given what she wanted!
Perseverance, endurance, steadfastness, some would call it: ‘stick-to-itness’!
Not to give up, not to be put off, not to abandon what one is asking for.
Not to get discouraged even if the answer is slow in coming or seems… never to come!
It seems that this is exactly what God admires and… yields to when we pray!
A video can be seen on this gospel scene at: