November 29, 2016

On asking God for trinkets

In John 16:22-24 we see a glorious unfolding.

The disciples were told by Jesus that soon, after he ascended into heaven, they would see him again.

He was telling them that life is indeed short. Don't be sad. Their lives on earth would soon end.

But don't let that fact cause any distress, Jesus told them, because they would be together again.

Upon seeing Jesus again, the disciples would rejoice, and no one would ever take that joy from them.

Jesus also told them to ask the Father for whatever they wanted, and in receiving it, their joy would be full. What do you suppose the disciples wanted from the Father? How do you think they prayed?

Many love to quote those verses from John 16, and attach getting trinkets to the promise found there.

"Do you want fullness of joy? Ask God for more! The world is your shopping center, and God will give it to you! Tell God what you want! Name it. Claim it. Stand your ground for more stuff!"

In any place in Scripture do we find that joy is found in the world, and what it offers?

Never.

"Whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you," (John 16:23).

No one can ask anything of the Father unless they first have an audience with him.

Communication with God, the Father, requires a perfect heart.

Knowing God, through faith in Jesus Christ, commands obedience to the words of Jesus first.

Keep asking. Keep seeking. Keep knocking.

But know this: the soul who knows God will ask nothing from him that is man-made.

Joy, complete happiness, does not, cannot, will not, occur in surroundings of silver or gold, or pretty and bigger houses, or expensive jewels, or for that matter anything one can see, or taste, or handle.

Fullness of joy is seeing Jesus (John 16:22).

Is that what you seek?

Is that your heart's desire?

Do you run after the Lord and the joy of knowing him, or more of the world and its treasures?

One will pass away, and be destroyed, and the other will bring one face to face with God.

One brings discontentment, and the other fills a soul with peace that passes understanding.

One is temporal, and the other eternal.

Which road are you walking?

Be still, and listen carefully.

Your heart's desires, and your prayers, will tell on you.


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