What Our Neighbour Really Needs
If we are trying to love our neighbour–to seek whatever is for his or her very best interest–and we trust God to help us and ask him to do so, we can have complete confidence that what our neighbour really needs will be provided.[via Prof. John Stackhouse's Weblog]
This might seem less than magic: “Ah, I see. So I can’t just ask for whatever I like, but now I have to ask for what God wants me to ask. Big deal!”
Instead, however, it is better than magic. Stories of magic around the world abound with unintended consequences that result in disaster–from Midas’s touch to Aladdin and his lamp to the Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Prayer is a great improvement upon magic because we are asking an infinitely wise and totally good Being to do what is really best, either what we want or something better.
We can be confident–literally, “with faith”–that only good will surely happen according to these promises. And that faith thus impels us to faith-ful-ness. It motivates us to get busy on things that matter, rather than quaking with paralyzing fear (”Will anything good come of this?”) or drowsing in slothful complacency (”What’s the use?”). Ask and act: trust and obey. Pretty basic–and the key to everything else in the Christian life.
So don’t bother asking for the moon.