by Marilyn Bennett
What should we ask God?
In Luke, Jesus teaches his disciples about prayer. He begins by giving them what we know as the Lord’s Prayer and then shares a story we can relate to, a story about a friend who refuses to help. Jesus says that even if your friend does not answer your request because of your friendship, he will answer because of your persistence.
Then Luke inserts,
“So I say to you: 'Ask and it will be given to you; Seek and you will find; Knock and the door will be opened to you.
For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.'"
Jesus then tells another story about a son and his father. If the son were to ask his father for a fish (a good gift) his father would not give him a snake (a harmful gift).
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
It is often difficult for people to ask for help. We don’t want to be seen as needy. However, being able to ask is necessary if we are going to develop a deeper relationship with God and with each other. Why? When we ask:
- we develop humility
- we are owning our needs
- we are taking the initiative
- we are developing a grateful character
And when we are persistent in our asking, the odds increase that our request will be answered.
Sometimes we get confused about how to pray, but when we look closely at what Jesus said, what Jesus meant, and who Jesus is, we get a clearer picture of the necessity to ask.
In this time of fear and confusion over the virus, what should we be asking God? Jesus said, “
How much more will the Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask?”
Maybe we should start there, asking God to continue filling us with the Holy Spirit. The Spirit brings:
- God’s peace and joy into our lives,
- God’s strength and courage,
- God’s wisdom and guidance, and most of all,
- the Spirit fills us with God’s transforming love.
When we are filled with these things, we become better people and a transforming influence on those around us.
In these times, we need a lot of Spirit. So, let’s pray for that!