The story of the Canaanite woman presents something of a conundrum at first glance. Like so many of the people who came to Jesus, she has a terrible need and the courage to approach the mysterious profit everyone has been talking about.
Strangely, almost cruely, Jesus apparently refuses to help her – complete with an apparent insult to her and her people! "It is not right to take the food of the children and threw it to the dogs." But the Canaanite woman doesn't back down, quickly asserting the needs of even those who aren't Israelites. And Jesus praises her faith, healing her daughter at that moment.
What's really going on here? Why the 'no' and then 'yes'?
It's perseverance. And not just perseverance, but also humble perseverance. The Canaanite woman embraces humility, acknowledging her need but not allowing the reality of lowliness to keep her from the goodness of the Lord. And her willingness to be emptied of pride allows her to receive God's grace in abundance.
How much Jesus desires to help us be opened to his grace! May we, like her, humbly pursue the Lord.