5 Then, teaching them more about prayer, he used this story: “Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him, 6 ‘A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit, and I have nothing for him to eat.’ 7 And suppose he calls out from his bedroom, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is locked for the night, and my family and I are all in bed. I can’t help you.’ 8 But I tell you this—though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence.[a]
9 “And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
11 “You fathers—if your children ask[b] for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? 12 Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! 13 So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”
Jesus taught His disciples the importance of being persistent in prayer so that they could obtain what they needed. Often times, when this disciple doesn’t get the answer I want, I respond like a self-centered child by throwing a hissy fit…and then I just stop talking to God altogether. Of course, that never brings about the desired result of getting my own way, all it does is separate me from the One who holds the keys to what I need to receive, find, or be opened to in the Spirit.
There are three items on my prayer list right now that I’ve been asking the Lord about for years. YEARS. One, in particular, He has remained silent on……I’m continuing to ask Him about it, but recently, my prayers have shifted from me stomping my foot, demanding an answer (right NOW!!!), to me demanding my will to submit to His. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, my focus has miraculously become less about the prayer that I want answered and more about the One who answers my prayers. Jesus modeled this most humbly, as he faced impending death on a cross:
39 He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”
On another prayer request, I’ve received an answer in the form of a promise. Since then, I’ve continued asking Him to confirm what I believe I heard through His Word- and others. As my doubt has begun to evaporate, transforming into faith the size of a mustard seed, I keep knocking, declaring “may Your Kingdom come, may Your will be done!”
9 Pray like this: Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy.
10 May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.
My final request has become a daily act of obedience. God, in His infinite wisdom continues to give me the manna I need to survive –just for the day. Realizing that He made me to be a planner, He knows that what I need (before He answers), is to know how to trust and follow His plan for my life. Just as with the other two requests, He is teaching me to submit my wants, my will to Him, so that I can learn how to love Him with all my heart, mind, soul and strength. After all, that is what my prayers should be about- His will, His purposes, His Kingdom, His power, His glory….not mine.