Friday, May 18, 2012

Why we don't ask for more

Picture Oliver Twist.  “Please, sir, I want some more.”  And the response, “MORE?!!???!!!”  swat smack push shove swat.  Are we conditioned not to ask for more?

My mom conditioned me out of a sense of courtesy.  My asking for more seemed to indicate that the hostess had not been generous enough and was thus a major insult.  How dare I be so selfish as to want MORE?!!???!!!

There is a generation that remembers the Great Depression  as more than the mood after a break up.  Families struggled to provide just enough for survival and asking for more was being ungrateful and unappreciative of all the work the family put in just to get what they had.  You want “MORE?!!???!!!”

There is a generation that remembers the sacrifices that needed to be made during war time.  What we had to give up so that or soldiers could fight for our freedom was part of or patriotic duty.  “MORE?!!???!!! Why that’s Anti-American.

We live in a market economy where you get what you deserve, what you have earned.  To ask for more without providing more product/service is bad commerce.  If you want more then work harder. Huh, more….

And what about the starving children in Sub-Saharan Africa?  How often have children been told to clean their plates because the food they are wasting could save a starving child.  Asking for more is equal to affirming genocide.  MORE?!!???!!! One might as well where a scarlet M on your chest for Murderer who wants MORE.

And yet… and yet… When it comes to God we are encouraged to ask for more and expect more.  We are encouraged to throw away our conditioning and embrace the sufficiency of Christ.  We can’t and don’t need to earn these gifts.  We are showing our fear that perhaps God is not larger than our dreams, perhaps we are not children of God and joint heirs with Christ, perhaps the Holy Spirit will not resource us to fight the battles ahead.  And fear of so many thing tells us over and over that we should never ask for more.  God however is more than market economies, and countries and courtesies and calamities.  God through the Holy Spirit knows our deepest needs and indeed translates and transmits the strongest groaning hungers of our souls to the kingdom of God.   Read these Words from Luke 11:

5 Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6 a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ 7 And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ 8 I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity[e] he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.

9 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

11 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for[f] a fish, will give him a snake instead? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

Please, Sir God Loving Abba Father, May I have some more?  MORE?!!???!!!  Why of course dear audacious bold and persistent child.  God’s love for you is endless.  God will send the very spirit of truth and love to live with you and in you, so you can understand how I give and how the world gives, for they are very different.  The world gives and consumes based on many appetites and addictions but the Lord gives so each has their daily bread, sufficient for this day’s journey.  And ll God’s people say, “Thank you, AMEN!”

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