Day 32: Good gifts
Have you ever been disappointed or frustrated by a prayer being unanswered? We have all asked God for something and not received what we asked for – how can this be in the light of the passage below?
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there anyone among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you then, although you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!”
“Ask, and you will receive; seek, and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” How amazing!!
It is easy to read this passage and think all I have to do is ask – and God will give me whatever I want!
Is Jesus really telling us that God is like a Genie in a Lamp, who will grant us any wish that we desire, whenever we ask for it? Absolutely not!
Psalm 37:4 says: “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart”.
1 John 5:14 says, “And this is the confidence that we have before him: that whenever we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”
Now, when we consider the words of Jesus in the light of these other scriptures, it takes on a very different meaning. Jesus is not saying, ‘Just ask for whatever you want and I will give it to you’. Instead, Jesus is saying to us that the driving motivation in our lives should be to seek our happiness in the Lord. And, as we find our happiness in a relationship with God through Jesus, then our desires in life will change and the things we pray for will change. Our desires will become aligned to the desires of God and God will gives us what we ask for.
God never promises us that we will be wealthy, free from all sickness, and free from problems. If we pray for those things, we have no Scriptural assurances that God will answer our requests. However, we do have promises that if we pray for God’s will, God will answer that prayer.
Jesus’ promise of receiving when we ask, seek, and knock is true only when we are pursuing the will of the King. God promises to answer those prayers. Matthew 5:6 says, “‘Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.”
Lord thank you that you give us good gifts when we seek you. Help me to delight myself in you. Help me to seek your will and to hunger for righteousness. Amen