What if…

Today’s scripture is Matthew 7: 7 – 8…
“Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you.  For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Today’s blog is written by Will Newton, Contemporary Worship Leader…

This verse is often used as a reassurance in times of doubt, confusion, or spiritual stagnation. I have always heard this section used to remind us that God desires to give us all of himself. Even the next couple verses, give us a wonderful metaphor of a Father giving good things to his children.

I wonder if our common interpretation of this verse is “cheap grace” – a bed-time assurance to help comfort us, rather than challenge us.

This verse is in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, sandwiched between phrases like, “choose the narrow gate,” and “do not give what is holy to dogs.” Later, in this same chapter, Jesus speaks of those who “work iniquity” and how they must depart from him.

So either this is a passing moment of spiritual coddling, or there’s something more powerful here than a spiritual Santa Claus.

Maybe the adage, “Be careful what you wish for” applies here. In the past couple years, I have asked, sought, and knocked for an answer to pains in our society. How does the Church end racism? How do we heal division and end hate-filled language across “affiliations”?

“God, please give us unity.”

Often I did not like the answers. You must become a servant of all. Love you enemy, and pray for those who persecute you. If there is discord, seek out reconciliation, as Christ reconciles you in his death.

If I ask it will be given – correct? The ease of that statement can misinform us as to what is on the other side of our request. I am certain that God does give us only good things. But sometimes our spiritual diet is not ready for good things. When you have feasted on potato chips for years and years, a head of broccoli is a scary thing. When you have lived comfortably amidst apathy and stagnant faith, the answer to your prayers for growth and change, may be to “take up your cross daily.”

If we want is a Savior, we may get a Sermon on the Mount. If we ask for justification for our sins, we will also be called into the sanctification of sin – drawn out to be a free people of God, rather than simply a receiver of His blessings.

The question is, “Are we still willing to enter through the door, if the other side isn’t what we wanted?”

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