"Everyone Who Asks Receives"
So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there anyone among you who, if your child asked for a fish, would give a snake instead of a fish? Or if the child asked for an egg, would give a scorpion? If you, then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him! (Luke 11:9-13)
This past week at our cabinet meeting one of our reflection questions during worship time was about a pressing question that we really want to ask Jesus. The question was “What is a question you find pressing that you would like to ask Jesus?” I thought hard and hoped that I would have many questions, but it turned out that I could not think of any relevant question in my mind that deserved to ask Jesus. The question I have, God has already helped me to understand what the answer may be. Interestingly, none of my colleagues reflected on this question either. We had no pressing questions for Jesus.
I confess, I don’t have any questions for now, but I may have in the future as I make my journey of life through God’s time to find myself closer to God. As I reflect on the text above and other Scriptures about prayer, I find a couple of interesting things about God as it relates to our prayer.
First, God has not only always wanted us to ask, but to ask for anything and to be persistent in our asking. He promised, “everyone who asks receives.” If you feel God has not answered your prayers, keep on praying, be persistent, and have faith in your prayers. James reminded us to have no doubt at all in our asking (James 1:6-8). Second, what we receive from our asking may be beyond our asking and understanding. Sometimes it may not be what we are asking for, but it is something better. It can be a “good gift” from God. A gift from God is always better and I would not turn away from it. We may not know now but we may know it someday. Third, we receive the Holy Spirit, if not the thing we are asking. Why the Holy Spirit? To name just a few, the Holy Spirit comforts us, counsels us, empowers us, sustains us, gives us life, knowledge and understanding, and leads us in our life journey. The Holy Spirit is here with us, and this may be all that we need, even in challenging times of our lives.
One reason that I don’t have any questions for Jesus is because I trust him completely. Whether I feel my prayers are answered or not, I know God will always be present with me for my best interest, in my joyful time or in my difficult time and time of need. The Holy Spirit has my best interest and all that I need. I hope that you will find trust in God for all your prayers and needs as well. Because God has promised “everyone who asks receives.”
Almighty God, our hope and our salvation. We give you thanks for your promise to always be with us and for us to ask anything from you. You are faithful and have given more than we ask. Help us to trust you more in our journey with you in time of uncertainty or in time of joy. Amen.