Weather… or Not
I have two weather apps on my tablet. Neither are terribly reliable beyond a day or two.
The more accurate app is boring to look at, but I consult it daily. The less accurate app is exciting in appearsnce. It has moving weather images in the background which reflect the weather for the day you are viewing, realistic images showing cycles of the moon, and numerous colorful ways to view the data. But, as I said, its forecasts are far less accurate. I seldom ask it anything because what it gives me can be damaging to my weather-dependent plans.
Thankfully, God does not give like that.
In Luke 11 Jesus has just finished giving His disciples a template for prayer, “the Lord’s prayer,“ as we like to call it, though really it would be better called “the disciples prayer” for it was to us that He gave it as guide. Jesus then presents an illustration teaching that we must be persistent in our asking. When He sees our sincerity He will answer.
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Luke 11:9-10)
He teaches us that God delights to give His children good things… just as we do… even the worst of us…
“Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 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!” (Luke 11:11-13)
Interesting that Jesus connects this truth about God’s good giving to the gift of the Holy Spirit. Perhaps He knows we sometimes think of the Spirit as something wild and out of control, something that might bite like a serpent, or sting like a scorpion. Maybe to counter this misconception is why God chose to represent the Holy Spirit as a dove, the gentlest of all birds, and Jesus often called Him the ‘Comforter.’
In Greek this word ‘Comforter’ is παράκλητος (paraklētos). meaning One called alongside….a Helper… a Friend. “There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother,” writes Solomon (Prov. 18:24). The Holy Spirit is the best such Friend of all… He is a gift from God, because of Christ. He is a good gift, a gift wrapped with you.
Solomon observed “Like clouds and wind without rain is one who boasts of gifts never given.” (Prov. 25:14) But the goodness of God’s giving is far more reliable than any man or man-made weather app.
Open your heart and mind and let Him flow out of your body to a desperate, dying, soul-starved world.
To hear Pastor Andrew’s complete message, go to the Lincoln Baptist Church website and look under ‘Sermons Online’ for the Sept. 29 message.