And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; 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!” (Luke 11:9-13 ESV)
It is hard to imagine a more encouraging invitation from the Lord to come to him in prayer. Ask, seek, knock, and all will succeed! Just as an evil father gives good gifts to a son who asks, much more the heavenly Father gives good gifts! In fact, he will give the very best gift there is – his own spirit! Reading this should have us praying all of the time. So why don’t we?
We interpret our experience in another way. We pray for someone to recover and they don’t. We pray for a relationship strain to get better, or a new job, a provision for something needed, etc. and God doesn’t answer. In light of the above, we need to rethink our assessment of God’s answer. It may be that God is giving the very thing we need because we pray. It may be that getting well right away for a person is not the best thing for them or you. Does he not often use our struggles as a way of drawing us into a deeper relationship with him? Of building our faith? God is always answering, if we are to believe these written words, and he is always answering with the very best of gifts! It may be that we need to rethink our experience and realize that God doesn’t always answer in the way we expect. And if that is the case, do you not think that his wisdom in the matter is greater than yours? What this text does not allow is for us to conclude that he does not answer. So let us pray!