Friday, September 23, 2022

Asking Already Answered Questions

Suggested Reading: Luke 18:35-42

In the Tom Cruise movie, Minority Report, three psychics hooked up to a computer interface predict crimes before they happen. Those yet uncommitted crimes are prevented, when possible, and the people who have not yet committed any crime are then punished for their potential future sins. When the potential abuses of this system are turned against one of its primary operators, suddenly people realize the difference between crimes that supposedly will occur and crimes that actually have occurred.

While scripture teaches us that God knows our words and actions long before we ourselves do, God also has this fairly consistent tendency to want to hear our prayers before letting us experience the answers to those prayers. For example, in Luke 18 Jesus was traveling down the road and a blind man began calling out to him. Jesus stopped, had the blind man brought before him, and asked what the blind man wanted from him. Now, everyone who reads this story knows exactly what the man wanted.  Everyone present that day probably knew exactly what the man wanted. But Jesus still asked so the man could respond, "Lord, I want to see!" (Luke 18:41, NIV).  We see a similar dynamic in the garden of Eden when God asked Adam why they had hidden from him and whether they had eaten the forbidden fruit.

Yes, God knows what we need. Yes, God often sets the answers to our prayers in motion long before we ever pray for that need.  But God still likes to be asked just like every one else and, amazingly, God often times things so that the final fruition of God's behind the scenes work on our prayers only occurs when we finally ask God to move. No one likes to be taken for granted, not even God, and it's hard for us to grow spiritually when we take God for granted.

Even though Good knows what you need, ask God anyway. The asking itself often does the most good.

What Did You Think Was Going to Happen?

Suggested Reading: Judges 16:4-21 or Judges 16 (the whole Samson and Delilah story) I may lose some readers over this statement, but.....