Sunday, November 2, 2014

Ask, Seek, Knock

 Prayer-life, intercession, seeking the Lord; whatever we call it, it has always been a part of my walk. I suppose that is normal for a believer in Christ. But as I mature, it is becoming as vital to me as the air I breathe.  I know I have much to learn about reaching up to God, staying diligent with my petitions, being willing to wait or perhaps accept an answer I didn't request, giving credit where credit is due when comes that sweet, wonderful reply from this most wonderful God that I cannot see with my eyes, nor hear with my ears, yet I know He is.
I love my Blue Letter Bible App.  So yeah, not all technology is evil, I suppose. This app lets me search for passages, phrases, and words in any translation.  Many sleepless nights I sit holding my little iPhone, searching and soaking, marveling and being filled with hope once again. Because sometime life can get rough, even when it's still good.  And we need answers and comfort and direction.  And He is just so good to give it all to us generously.  I so love typing in a word like 'trust' or 'love' or 'salvation' and just having a host of wonderful scriptures fill my screen.  
Recently, I have been pondering the scriptures with 'prayer' in them.  This can be a tough world to live in sometimes.  And my list of people to pray for just keeps growing.  As I fill my days with meal plans and toilet cleaning and history lessons and science co-ops, I often wish I could do more for those 'out there'.  And I know someday I will do more, as my babies grow up.  But today, and hopefully all days, I can pray.  And I pray to One Who truly hears, Who truly has all wisdom and understanding, love and compassion, judgment and mercy. And there is really nothing in the world more precious to me than that knowledge that God is alive, and Almighty, and working His wonders in me as I look up to Him and ask Him for what we need.

Here are some sweet scriptures on prayer that have fed my soul in this season.
*Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving;* Col. 4:2
*The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much* James 5:16
*When my soul fainted within me, I remembered the LORD; And my prayer went up to You, into Your holy temple.* Jonah 2:7
*Rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer* Romans 12:12
*The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, but the prayer of the upright is His delight.* Prov. 15:8
*Blessed be God, Who has not turned away my prayer, nor His mercy from me!* Ps. 66:20

And after the Lord's Prayer, Jesus talks of a man needing bread for a traveler.  He goes to his friend's home in the night and asks for the bread.  The friend is already in bed with his family and does not want to be troubled.  But he will give the bread because of his friend's persistence.  Then Jesus speaks the well-known words, "So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened."
The highlighted words have got me thinking.  I remember going to the mall with my friends as a teenager.  In front of one store, there was a short wooden statue of Buddha, and you could rub his belly as you made a wish.  Do I also pray to God like that?  Quickly, as I am passing from one thing to the next? Hoping He answers me, but being okay if He doesn't, because I really just don't want to take the time to ask?
I know I am still green-ish in my understanding of God and prayer.  But these past few weeks, I have witnessed answer after answer as I have called out to Him, hoping in His goodness,  Sometimes it feels like labor, because I love the people I pray for so much! 
I do know this - He is alive and He will help us if we ask.  
Is there something in your life that is unresolved, troubling, painful?  Then ask, and seek, and knock.  And don't stop, because He never runs out of anything.  He is not offended at our need.  Like the woman at the well, He knows it all anyhow. He never tires of our asking.  Hard for an introverted mother of many to imagine not being tired of people asking!  I am always rationing things around here, and I might even lock my door for some quiet every once in a while...But hallelujah He does not tire! His door is always open!  He is ever-ready to receive His people and their requests.

*Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.* 1 Peter 5:7

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