I enumerated to God all my family’s needs. I fervently prayed for our wants and dreams as well. At some point I thought, “There’s a lot that I’m asking for.” But then again I thought, “If I’m enumerating all these prayer intentions to a human like me, I wouldn’t be surprised if that person would feel overwhelmed. But I’m not just sharing this to an ordinary person. I am lifting up my prayers to the God of the universe, the source of all riches, the source of all power and might.” I reminded myself that I’m praying to my Father in heaven who loves me immensely and unconditionally. I don’t need to deserve what I ask for. I don’t need to bribe Him. I don’t need to make long explanations to Him why I’m asking for all these things. He knows my heart. He knows why. He knows what’s best or good for me.
I continued my morning prayer by reading the devotionals I use. This was the first thing that I read.
NOTHING too TRIVIAL
“And I tell you, ask and you will receive...” – Luke 11:9
I was faced with a pressing problem. How was I supposed to retrieve all the telephone numbers stored in my busted cell phone? In my desperation, I turned to God. Like a little child, I begged Him to let my phone function even for just a short time so I could copy the numbers to the SIM card and transfer it to my new phone.
Would God answer such a trivial request? I tried to stay positive and hopeful. I believed that even if my concern was about technical matters, He could do something about it. For two days, I didn’t turn my phone on but I continued to pray for my concern. On the third day, my phone “resurrected.” After I copied all the numbers to the SIM card and transferred it to my new phone, my old cellphone “rested in peace.”
I believe that when Jesus said, “Ask and you will receive,” He is open to any kind of request. If it is God’s will, He will definitely answer our prayer — but according to His terms.
Do you need something from God but feel that your request is trivial? Believe me, He does listen and answer every prayer… in His time. Judith Concepcion (firstname.lastname@example.org)
It was a beautiful and timely reflection written by my friend, Judith. I felt God affirming me that there is no limit to what I can ask for in prayer and that He will grant my prayers, big and small alike, as long as they are for my good.
Then, I went on to read Companion. I was struck by a line in the commentary for the Gospel for today. It says, “The power of a life of prayer cannot be underestimated even when it seems that nothing is happening.” Wow! It’s been almost six months now but it seems that nothing is happening if I will just look at our situation with my physical eyes because until now, we have not found a buyer/s for the condominium units we are selling. But deep within me, I know that God is working and making a way. Deep within me there is that stubborn confidence in my heavenly Father’s love and faithful provision.
I went on to read the Gospel. These lines made a big impact on me once more.
“And I tell you, ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. What father among you would hand his son a snake when he asks for a fish? Or hand him a scorpion when he asks for an egg? If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?” Luke 11:9-13
It was God speaking clearly again to my heart. ASK. You will receive what you ask for. SEEK. You will find what you need. KNOCK. You will find doors opening to let you in. Why would I refuse to give you something you truly need? Something that is good not only for you but for those whom you want to help and bless?
I sometimes ask myself if it is still right for me to keep on asking God for the many things I’ve been asking of Him for months or years now. I sometimes pause and ask if I should stop asking for them thinking that they might not be God’s will for me and my family. What keeps me from keeping on though is that certainty I feel inside but can’t explain. Today, as I read my devotionals, I found the words to explain my reason for praying continuously.
Let me quote some parts of the reflection from Sabbath, which by God’s divine plan was written by the priest who officiated my wedding:
For all we know, God is already disposed (and more than willing, in fact!) to grant us the graces that we need. As a loving Father, He has already anticipated our wants. Didn’t His son Jesus already assure us? “Ask and you shall receive... For whoever asks, receives...” But maybe our Lord still wants us to voice out and address our needs to His Father. He wants us to make the effort still of asking, seeking and knocking — if only to remind us of our utter helplessness and total dependence on God.
Helplessness and total dependence. Hmmm… That’s a good reminder. It could be that God wants me to remember this lesson well before He grants my prayers. So that when He finally answers them, I would not forget to thank Him and give back the praise and glory due His name.
Let me quote some more lines: “God does not operate on a mere dole-out basis; He never dispenses cheap grace. And so, we just have to do our part in entreating God, accompanied by the complete confidence that our efforts will not be in vain.”
Our efforts will not be in vain. Hmmm… Another assuring word from God. I have to admit that there are days when I could relate with Peter in the Gospel story where Jesus asked him to put out into the deep and lower their nets again. This Gospel passage and reflection from Sabbath assured me that whatever efforts I exert to find buyer/s for our condominium units would not be in vain.
Through the reflection, God encouraged me to invoke the Holy Spirit’s blessing and power as I work on the things I need to work on today.
It ended with this message:
“Let us never falter in asking God. Let us not easily give up on our prayer, should the Lord delay in granting (or even understandably refuse) what we ask for. Whatever it is, let us be persistent and persevering in our prayer.”
Be persistent and persevering in prayer. Do not waiver in confidence and faith. That’s God’s powerful and clear message to me today. That’s what I did this morning and throughout the day as I worked on the projects God has entrusted to me and as I carried out my duties at home.
God has not yet put the exact amount of money that I need to fully pay the down payment for our townhouse in my pocket right now. But He has given me an abundance of faith, hope, perseverance, and inspiration since I started praying for this and my other intentions. I’m confident that His perfect answer to my prayers is on the way. They may be exactly what I pray for or very far from my expectation. I honestly don’t know. But I know and I’m confident that my Father in heaven will grant me my heart’s fervent prayers in the most perfect way. So, I’ll just keep on asking until something too wonderful for words would unfold before my eyes once more.