Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | July 15, 2013

July 15, 2013 “Faith, Focus, and Follow-Through”

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7)

Good Morning Fellow Life Travelers!

Regular followers of my daily postings will know that I often reference “The Message Bible”, because I like the down-to-earth language it uses to convey the Word to today’s readers. I chose the more familiar translation from the NIV Bible today as my header, but I do like the way The Message Bible states what Jesus is teaching his followers about prayer. In the Message Bible, this passage is translated: “Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This isn’t a cat-and-mouse, hide- and seek game we’re in.” Jesus makes a point of assuring his followers that God gives good gifts, and that we should persist in our pursuit of God’s goodness.He is not trying to trick us. He knows how to give good gifts, and delights in doing so because He loves us. I have known people who have given up on God after tossing up a few halfhearted prayer efforts, concluding that since those prayers were not immediately answered, that either God does not exist or that he does not care about them. To truly know God takes asking, seeking, and knocking. In other words, it takes focus, faith, and follow-through on our part. Jesus tells his followers that if they do this, the Heavenly Father is quite ready to give good gifts to those that ask, seek, and knock. Don’t approach the Throne of Grace halfheartedly. Approach it with joyous expectation. Continue to ask God for those things that are truly worthy and are good gifts…knowledge, patience, wisdom, love, and understanding. As he has done for many before you, he will also give them to you. Let’s pray!

Lord God, giver of good gifts; teach us that communicating our desires to you need not be a fearful thing. We understand ourselves how to give good gifts to our own children. How much more, then, can we expect of you! We come thankfully, expectantly, humbly before You with the prayers of our hearts, with faith, focus, and follow-through, and with thanksgiving and praise. Amen!

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