Does “Pray” mean more than “Ask”?
“We go to God as we send a boy to a grocery store with a long written list,” notes A. W. Tower. “But I think God is disappointed because we make Him to be no more than a source of what we want.” Indeed, God as Santa Claus is a travesty of the gospel!
Tozer goes on…
“Even our Lord Jesus is presented too often much as ‘Someone who will meet your need.’ That’s the throbbing heart of modern evangelism. You’re in need and Jesus will meet your need. He’s the Need-meeter. Well, He is that indeed; but, ah, He’s infinitely more than that.” – A. W. Tozer
I mean, have you ever known a friend like that? — Someone who comes ‘round only when they want something? It has wryly been said of such a person, “If someone borrows $20 from you and then you never see that person again it was worth the investment!” Thing is, you really do want to help the person… you love them… but you sure wish they loved you enough to just want to be with you… tell you about their day… their successes, failures, ambitions and loves. Or to simply say ‘thank you.’
People flocked around Jesus for all sorts of reasons when He walked among us. None of them fooled Him though. “He knew all people… He knew what was in each person.” (John 2:24,25). “You are looking for me,” He said “…because you ate the loaves and had your fill.” (John 6:26). He knew what it was to go thankless. “Where are the nine?” He asked the one returning grateful leper of the ten he had healed (Luke 17:11-19).
I wonder, if we are really honest with ourselves, for what sort of reason do we most often seek Jesus? What is “prayer” to you? Is it merely another word for “asking”? Or is is truly a time of “conversing” — of just wanting to be with Christ… of telling Him about your day… your successes, failures, ambitions and loves, or simply a time of saying ‘thank you’ — and a time of listening?
Wise men seek Jesus simply to see Him… to bring Him gifts… to express to Him the praise that is His due (Matt. 2:1-12). He is a Great King. He is the Lord — and He invites us to pray.
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