I was pastoring my first church and living in the church provided home. The church was small, but we crunched numbers so we could pay someone to cut grass at the church and parsonage. But the extra expense was taxing. We considered using volunteers, but no one wanted to commit. While pondering our dilemma, someone told me about a local business that made lawn mowers and would possibly donate one to the church. I could cut our grass and the church would only have to pay to have the church’s grass cut. So I wrote a formal letter, explained our situation, and asked for a riding mower. Shortly thereafter, I received a response that read, “Come get your mower.” But if I wouldn’t have asked…
Yet you don’t have what you want because you don’t ask God for it. And even when you ask, you don’t get it because your motives are all wrong—you want only what will give you pleasure. (James 4:2-3 NLT)
As God’s child, he has good gifts in store for me. But just as I had to ask for the lawnmower, I also have to ask him for the gifts—or at least for him to reveal them to me. Asking demonstrates my interest. God already knows whether or not I’m interested in what he has for me. The asking simply expresses my faith in his ability to give and in my willingness to use it.
If God isn’t giving, it may not be because I haven’t asked but because I’ve asked with improper motives. It’s important that I investigate why I’m asking for a particular thing or opportunity. Are the reasons selfish, conniving, or improper? If so, I shouldn’t expect God to deliver.
Are you enjoying all God has for you? If not, why not ask?
Prayer: Eternal God, may we come before You with sincerity as we ask You to deliver the good things You have for us in Your treasure house.
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