When Nelson Mandela embraced his fight against injustice and apartheid, the authorities did everything possible to silence him and break his spirit. He narrowly escaped death penalty, was imprisoned and forced to do hard labor, allowed only one visitor per year and was never allowed to turn off the light in his tiny cell. But he never gave up, he continued to fight and lead his movement from inside the prison walls. Through his determination and perseverance, he was able to win the fight and bring a positive change and healing to his country and to the world.
Determination and perseverance are also important aspects of a spiritual life. This is demonstrated too beautifully in today’s Gospel reading about the healing of Syrophoenician woman’s little daughter. Initially, we see Christ dismissing her plea and request for healing, but she was not about to give up and through her faith and determination the child was healed.
“Then he said to her, “For saying that, you may go—the demon has left your daughter.” So, she went home, found the child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.” Mark 7:29-30