Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Ask for the want and then accept the answer...

Week 49:

2 Corinthians 12:8-9 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

I go back and forth in my life over prayerful requests to God.  I have heard sermons and studied lessons over the subjects of prayer and requests.  Some discourage the asking for trivial things.  In fact, some discourage too much asking in prayer.  Some encourage me to bring everything to God.  There is some truth in both worlds of thought.  Asking with a wrong motive in mind will get me nowhere.  Not asking at all is a form of doing life on my own without God’s guidance.

Paul’s story of the thorn in his flesh is a good example to follow.  Paul had a want.  He brought that want before God…three times.  When I have a want, I need to bring it to God.  I will get an answer.  It may not be the answer I want, but He is faithful to answer.  It may not be in the time-frame I expect, but He is faithful to answer.  The key is:  Bring my want to God.

Just because God’s answer may be “no”, does not mean I should not ask.  He is not going to think less of me because of my ask or my want.  Even if my ask is shallow and/or selfish.  He knows my heart.  He knows the whole of my being.  And, ultimately, He knows He is going to answer His way in His time and He is comfortable with His answer.  Even if I second guess His answer; He is not swayed or insecure.  His plan will prevail and it is perfect.

This leads me to the second part of the request.  In order to live free, I must accept God’s answer.  God answered Paul (in some form or fashion) that His grace was sufficient and that Paul’s strength was in weakness.  Paul accepted the answer with gladness.  He saw God’s hand and the support of Christ in the answer.  Even to the point of boasting.

Many times, I feel that I get no answer.  Sometimes, God is silent.  The silence may mean I am to wait.  It may mean “no”.  However, I think many times that I assume too much through the silence.  It may not be silence at all.  The answer may be loud and clear and I’m so focused on what I think the answer should be that I miss the true answer.  Could it be that I am so self-absorbed in my want that I miss the answer? 

So, I find this truth about me.  The want is easy.  The ask is sometimes hard (I may feel too shallow or afraid).  The acceptance of the answer is hard when it is not what I want or hard to hear or see.  Yet, my example of Paul is the example for me to follow. 


1.      How does this verse land with you?
2.      What wants have you brought to God in the last year?
3.      Did you hear or see an answer?  What was the answer?
4.      What wants have you held back and not brought to God?  Why?
5.      This week, I challenge you to bring your want(s) to God and ask His guidance and answer around the ask.  Pay attention to what happens next.

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