(We’ve recently starting looking at the Biblical references to the conversations that God has with people. This post goes along with our theme at Gracehill. It is by Lennon Noland. You can read more by Lennon (or follow him) at www.godlifeandduke.com)
“What Father among you, if his son asks him for a fish, would give him a snake instead of a fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” Jesus, Luke 11
As I was drinking coffee and reading in Luke this morning, I read over the portion where Jesus is teaching his disciples to pray. Luke follows up what we refer to as “the Lord’s prayer” with a parable and teaching from Jesus about the character of God in response to persistent prayer from His children (that would be all of us who believe in Him). The part I wanted to call your attention to, friends, is not the fact that Jesus says God will grant the request of His child who is asking, but that Jesus directly states WHAT His children SHOULD be asking FOR: “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?”
This seems a bit of a departure from the immediate context of the teaching, so I can only guess that Jesus was making a point that His disciples needed whether or not they asked for it: They needed not just to know how to pray, but they needed to know what should be their greatest priority when they prayed. The greatest thing God can give to us through prayer, and evidently, what God most desires to give us through prayer, is more of His Holy Spirit.
This is huge.
How would our lives change if we focused our prayers on having more of God within us than seeing God do things for us?
How would our outlook on trying circumstances change as we sensed God’s presence so tangibly near?
How would our internal struggles change as the Mind of God increasingly became our own?
How would we treat people if we had more of the heart of God during our daily interactions? Would we be more patient? Less judgmental? More generous?
What would be different for you? There is only one way to find out for sure…to pray and see:
Father, of all the things I can pray for this morning, I pray for more of Your Holy Spirit. Your word says Jesus was full of the Holy Spirit beyond measure. Increase the measure in which I sense your presence within me, and let it change those things in me that I’ve felt so powerless to change myself. Let me see people as You do, and respond to them as You would. Give me more of Yourself, because nothing is more precious than You.
(Thanks to Lennon Noland for the use of this post. www.godlifeandduke.com)