Saturday, May 31, 2014
May 31: The proper way to ask
Ask and it will be given to you… For everyone who asks receives. (Matthew 7:7,8 NET)
Jesus must have intended for us to understand this promise to mean that a person should ask, and keep on asking until he receives what he is asking for. Clearly, asking once is not always enough. Elijah on Mount Carmel prayed seven times before it rained, Jesus Himself prayed a second time for a blind man, Hannah had prayed countless times for a son and had gotten nothing, until one day she prayed like she had never prayed, and there are the examples of the Syrophoenician woman, the persistent widow, and Bartimaeus. So whenever we approach God to ask Him for something, we should be prepared to persist in our prayers. Instead of giving up after one try and assuming that what we have asked for is not God’s will because we did not immediately receive it, if it is something that falls within the general will of God, we should be bold and tireless in our asking. At times God is intent on testing our character in the process.
Isn’t it interesting to note that Jesus places no conditions on the asking; whoever has the faith to ask will receive. Faith is a great leveler. Rich, poor, handsome, ugly, old, young, educated, uneducated, holy man, sinner… all have to use the same means to get what they want from God — we all have to ask in faith. The rich man does not have an advantage over the poor, nor can the well-spoken assume he will be heard before the stutterer. All are required to manifest a bold, audacious faith, being sure that what they do not yet see is already theirs. Though billions of people pray every day, many do not even come close to the type of asking that God is looking for.
“Everyone who asks receives” is a wonderful guarantee that if we persist in asking, and have an unwavering faith, our request will be granted. Remember, God wants us to receive more than we want to receive. He loves to give, it’s just that He wants us to develop character along the way, not just receive the blessing.