Grow Through The Gospels: Matthew 7

Pastor Ed Young - Lead Pastor of Fellowship Church
Ed Young

June 9, 2024

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Grow Through The Gospels: Matthew 7

Read: Matthew 7

Matthew 7:7-11 “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. Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 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 good gifts to those who ask him!”

Think

Father Knows Best wasn't just a TV show from the 1950s; it was a cultural icon that painted an idyllic picture of American family life. Centered around Jim Anderson, the wise patriarch, the show provided entertainment and a lens through which post-WWII America could view the ideal family dynamics. Jim's gentle guidance and timely wisdom offered solutions that maintained family unity and respect, reflecting an era's aspirations and the collective yearning for stability and harmony within the family. This nostalgic view of a wise father leading his family with gentleness and strength offers a beautiful parallel to how we can view our relationship with our heavenly Father.

In Matthew 7:7-11, Jesus gives us a promise that’s incredibly reassuring and somewhat mystifying: "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you." At first, it sounds like a blanket assurance that whatever we pray for, we will receive. Yet, experience shows us that the reality of prayer is more complex, as our requests aren't always granted in the ways we expect. Jesus follows this promise with a crucial clarification: "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 good gifts to those who ask him!" This highlights a fundamental truth about God’s nature—he is good and that goodness defines his responses to our prayers.

Think about parenting: there are times when a child might ask for something that, as parents, we know is not in their best interest. We say no, not out of a desire to withhold good, but because our broader perspective and deeper love compel us to choose a better path for them. In the same way, God sees our lives from an eternal perspective and responds to our prayers with wisdom and love, even when his answers are not what we anticipated.

Let's then come to God with boldness and confidence, trusting that he hears and answers every prayer. But let's also come with a heart of trust, recognizing that his answers are always given through the lens of divine wisdom and love. Whether we receive exactly what we asked for or not, we can rest assured that our heavenly Father knows best, providing not always what we want but invariably what we need. This understanding invites us to deepen our relationship with him, secure in the knowledge that his ways are perfect, even when they are beyond our comprehension.

Apply

Begin journaling your prayers. Seeing your prayers get answered or changed will astound you. Consider how these outcomes demonstrate God's wisdom and care, and they will build your trust in him.

Pray

Lord, open my heart to see and understand that you know what’s best. Help me accept your answers gracefully, whether they align with my desires or challenge me. Teach me to see your hand at work and trust in your goodness. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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