This fresh set of Daily Devotions is being provided for our LCA/NZ family, friends and visitors to help us to keep our eyes on Jesus as we face unsettling times. They can be used by families and individuals as part of the LCA/NZ’s Church@Home resources to encourage us and build trust in our Heavenly Father during this season of uncertainty and physical isolation.
by Sal Huckel
Click here for your printable verse to carry with you today.
‘Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you’ (Matthew 7:7).
A popular memory verse even for the youngest of children, it takes a lifetime to comprehend these words and try to understand how to pray. How to ask our Father in heaven for our heart’s desires in prayer – and to understand how that dovetails with the answers that we do – and don’t – see on this earth.
Discernment is key – and something that mature Christians can still struggle with.
You may have many examples from your own life of doors that have, and have not, opened as you called on the Lord frequently and fervently, or sometimes just once and simply, in prayer. It’s a mystery.
Recently as a family, we have prayed so hard into a hoped-for overseas school trip. Around November last year, we prayerfully admitted defeat and resigned ourselves to the fact that it was not God’s will for our family.
We had been ‘body-slamming’ against that door – it was a trip that no doubt honoured God, was a Christian school camp, and ticked so many boxes. It could have easily been God’s will for us. Instead, I went to the UK on an emergency trip alone. We had no hope of raising the money and accepted it wasn’t God’s will. Then came COVID-19.
I have no idea whether if we had continued body-slamming against that door it would have eventually opened. If it had, we would be sitting here now, with a cancelled camp, probably losing thousands of dollars on the cancelled airfares and accommodation.
Other testimonies exist in our family of gently tapping on the door in prayer with amazing results. These are all part of our Matthew 7:7 story. The lesson for us, for now, is to be discerning as we thankfully were. Don’t push too hard a door that doesn’t want to open.
Father God, thank you for faithfulness to our prayers and for hearing everyone. Help us to be discerning about how to pray in line with your will. Help those of us who are parents or mentors to teach the importance of discernment in prayer – and help us not to be discouraged when doors won’t open. Thank you for having a plan for our lives and for sometimes giving us an insight into why doors do – and don’t – open, when we call on you in Jesus’ name. Amen.