Unwavering Faith

Matthew 15:25 (ESV)
"25 But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me.”

In this verse, we see the cry of the Canaanite woman who, with a heart filled with anguish, came to Jesus for help for her daughter. Such was her distress that she did not concern herself with any formalities or ceremony—she came to Jesus without waiting for any invitation.

Notice in Matthew 15:23 how the disciples begged Jesus to send her away, likely due to her undignified approach and her ethnicity. Jesus reminded everyone of His primary mission to the house of Israel in Matthew 15:24, yet He did not dismiss the woman. Instead, He tested her faith in Matthew 15:26, by saying, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs”, an obvious reference to Jews and Gentiles.

But she was not to be deterred. It’s worth noting that there was never a consideration on the woman’s part of if Jesus could heal her daughter, only if He would be willing to.

She faced discouragement from the disciples and in the initial utterance of our Lord, yet her faith remained steadfast. True faith is persistent in trying times, and it was because of her refusal to let her faith waiver that she was victorious in her mission. When she replied in verse 27, “Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” Jesus then said to her, “O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee as thou wilt”. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour (Matthew 15:28).

The strong faith in this woman—who likely had no knowledge of Scripture—serves as an encouragement to us to cultivate trust in God with respect to the salvation of our loved ones. We should always be concerned about members of our family who are separated from Christ and be as torn as this woman was!

The power of prayer rests in the earnestness of the soul. James tells us that we should ask in faith, without any doubt, for those who doubt are like the waves of the sea, tossed and driven by the wind (James 1:6).

This verse of Scripture also serves as a reminder that prayer need not be filled with eloquent words and phrases, but simple expressions born from a heart that recognizes our need for Him in our lives and in the lives of those we love.

Lord, help me, indeed.