“The great law of the spiritual life is asking.”
“You have not because you ask not.”
“Whatever you ask of Me in My name I will do it.”
“I am going to spend the rest of my life asking people to give themselves and their resources to Jesus Christ.”
Ever been on a flight and had the guy next to you ask if he could have the whole can of Coke? Sometimes the flight attendant says “yes” and sometimes “no.” Many times the answer is “yes” and the guy gets the whole can. Why did he get the whole can? Because he asked. You didn’t get a whole can. Why? Because you didn’t ask.
Asking is such an interesting, sometimes thrilling, sometimes boring, and sometimes frightening activity. If, as a 9 year-old, you have ever walked up to the door of a stranger to ask them to buy Girl Scout cookies you have probably known the fear of asking. If you have ever asked a girl to marry you then you have probably known the thrill of asking. If you have ever worked the drive up window at McDonalds and have asked, “May I take your order?” 11.3 billion times then you have experienced the boredom of asking.
Asking can be thrilling, boring, or frightening. But asking is also very important—it is a spiritually brilliant activity.
First, asking is spiritually brilliant because it opens the possibility of the direct work of the God of the universe. The most powerful Being Who could possibly exist is willing to respond to your asking. Sometimes He will say “Yes” and sometimes He will say “No.” But you are invited to ask God to work in specific ways! Please think about that. What if you had a private phone line to Bill Gates and you could call him at any time of the day or night and ask for money? He might say no and he might say yes. But, would that excite you? What if you had a private phone line to the Almighty God of eternity and you could call Him any time of the day or night and ask Him to work? Would that excite you? I wonder if we have been faithful to ask God to work.
Second, asking is spiritually brilliant because it opens the possibility of a positive response from people who have resources to give—time, money, service, expertise, things, opportunities, networks, forgiveness, and much more. I wonder how many resources we have left untapped for the cause of Christ and for meeting personal needs because we have failed to ask. I wonder how many times in our lives we have needed something and been unwilling to humble ourselves, take a risk, and ask.
I know a man who was in full-time ministry and needed some financial help. He began asking for help and one thing he did was to go to his dentist and asked for free dental care for himself and his whole family. Now you may be thinking, “How presumptuous!” or “I would never do that!” or “What an arrogant person!” The dentist, absolutely un-offended said, “I won’t do that but I will give you personally free dental care.” The man gets free dental care to this day. Why? Because he asked.
The brilliant hockey player Wayne Gretzky once said, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” Could I adopt that and say, “The answer is “no” to 100% of the requests you don’t make.”
I don’t have free dental care—but then again I never asked. I don’t usually get the whole can of Coke—but then again I rarely ask.
I am pretty sure that I am not asking God enough. I am pretty sure I am not asking others enough.
Please be clear about what I am NOT saying. I am not saying ask for stuff to consume on yourself. I am not saying to ask for stuff so that your own life will be easy and fun and full of leisure. I am saying to ask for what you need and for what will enhance the Name and the cause of Christ.
As Steve Shadrach said, “I am going to spend the rest of my life asking people to give themselves and their resources to Jesus Christ.”
So am I.