God truly gives us everything we ask for. A lot of the time, however, it seems like He doesn’t do this. Is God a liar? Is He tricking us? Or do we need to open our minds more to understand what He means, not what we think He should mean?
To teach us about this truth, Jesus tells us in Luke 11, “And I tell you, ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. What father among you would hand his son a snake when he asks for a fish? Or hand him a scorpion when he asks for an egg? If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Father in heaven give the holy Spirit to those who ask him?”
To be honest, this passage always seemed too bold for me. Am I really going to receive what I ask for? How is this true?
Other things that Jesus teaches in the Bible are a lot easier to fall in line with, such as loving your neighbor, prayer and take up your cross and follow me is an easier concept to believe. I believe this is because all these other teachings are fairly objective. They all have to do with a universal concept and what I can do for Jesus. But “ask and receive” is subjective. It has to do with me and what I feel about myself. It makes me ask the questions “am I worthy enough to receive what I ask for? Am I good enough?”
Well, the answer is yes! Yes! YES!
Jesus does not say “ask, and if you have your life together and everything is perfect, then you will receive.”
He does not say “ask, and if you don’t ever make a mistake, then you will receive.”
It’s not “ask, and if you don’t have any mental health issues or emotional wounds, then you will receive.”
It’s “ask and you will receive.”
And we receive what we ask for 100% of the time if we are persistent. The friend in the story mentioned above doesn’t open the door because his friend asked, but because his friend kept asking. Not to say God gets bothered by us, but He will respond to those who do not give up.
I once asked an old employer why he hired me, and he pointed to my application, remarking he was impressed that I called him every day for two weeks inquiring about the position.
God wants us to impress Him with our passion. Why? Because this is good for us, to seek Him out, continuing our connection with Him with the desire of our heart. I would even say He will put those desires in our hearts to bring about the whole process.
Persistence brings about possession. However, we need to change our minds regarding what we will possess through our asking.
We might not get a specific thing we ask for, as everyone who has asked God for a million dollars this past year already knows, but we will get what we are truly asking for through God. We must understand what we are really seeking through what we are asking for. When we ask for a million dollars, what we are actually seeking is security, fun, peace from financial burden, and freedom. In fact, if we had these things, then we wouldn’t really want the money anyway.
When we ask Jesus with persistence, we always get whatever we want through whatever we are asking for. We will always eventually get the joy, excitement, peace, security, and more that we seek from God.
Going back to the Bible verse above, we also need to trust that God is truly the loving Father who will give us these things that we ask for, even when it feels like He is not. Sometimes it feels like He is giving us snakes and scorpions when we ask for fish and eggs, though He is always truly giving us fish and eggs, it can just be difficult to see sometimes.
We can trust that God, who is generous and loves you, is bringing you what you’ve asked for. Whether it is the specific thing you ask for, which He will deliver, or the fulfillment of what you desire through what you ask for, He always brings about what is best for us. He simply tells us that we need to ask in order to receive these things.
To better prepare ourselves for our asking so that we can be sure to receive what we seek, we have three steps to keep in mind while you are going to God with your requests.
- Be detached from your literal expectations. God will give you what you desire, it just might not look how you expect. Be open to what He wants to give you, and then be ready to be pleasantly surprised at receiving exactly what you asked for in a different way than you thought you would.
- Be patient and persistent. God can take a while sometimes. It’s not to tease or hurt you, but because He has a greater purpose. Also, you might need to learn a few lessons so that you can better receive what you seek. Trust God knows what He is doing while you wait for His answer.
- Give Jesus your heart. He wants a relationship with you. We must realize nothing fulfills us more than Jesus. We can’t let the things we want in this world take His place in our hearts or keep us from knowing Him better. Love Jesus, seek Him, and He will take care of you.