Genesis 32:22-31; Psalm 121; 2 Timothy 3:14-4:5; Luke 18:1-8
We live in a time when a good number of people have opted out of the religious life. But that should not surprise us when religion is reduced to a rigid set of rules dividing the world into us and them, good and bad, saved and damned. But the opposite is equally unconvincing as religion seeking to be all things to all people ends up being no-things speaking to no one. The compelling truth is somewhere in between rigid rules and self-indulgence. The lessons for Pentecost 21c acknowledge the difficulties life presents and paint a more realistic and compelling reason for the life of faith. Wrestling through the night with the One who cannot be overcome leads one limping to do what both know must be done. Lifting eyes to the hills where there is little hope leads one to see the just in time Lord in the midst of trouble. Persistent faith means we hear and more importantly live the truth despite hard of hearing itching ears. And praying always without losing heart is where faith makes the waiting life a life worth living.