There’s a difference between being a beggar and being a believer. And then there’s also this thing called persistence.
Jesus said, “Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him, ‘A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit, and I have nothing for him to eat.’ And suppose he calls out from his bedroom, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is locked for the night, and my family and I are all in bed. I can’t help you.’ But I tell you this—though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence. So I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you” (Luke 11:5-9, NLT).
I’ve often heard people quote Luke 11:9 about asking, seeking, and knocking, but we sometimes forget to read the context before or after to get the whole picture. In this account, Jesus was totally trying to help His disciples understand an important principle of prayer –persistence.
But instead of getting the picture in our mind that God is deaf, or that He wants us to grovel at His feet, or that we have to get our act really cleaned up first, Jesus used the example of a FRIEND who probably would’ve helped any other time, but it was in the middle of the night. Yet, because of the man’s persistence, the friend got up and helped anyway.
The Message Translation says, “Ask and you’ll get; Seek and you’ll find; Knock and the door will open. Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This is not a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we’re in” (verses 9-10).
Here’s the key I want you to remember:
[Tweet “WE KEEP ASKING BECAUSE WE BELIEVE GOD IS THE ONLY ONE WE NEED. #faith”]
It’s about faith. That’s why we’re called believers, not beggars. Jesus didn’t tell us to keep on asking because God needs us to beg. Jesus knew God is pleased with faith.
It’s easy to knock on a door once and if no one answers, go to the next door (or in this case, a Plan B). But it’s a whole other ballgame when we stand at the door, knock, and keep knocking because we believe there’s not another door that has our answer! Too many people hurry to the next door. I’ve done it myself. But the Bible says, “Without faith, it’s impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6).
To keep asking, seeking, and knocking reveals our faith that God is our source! And I’ll add: this is not a 9-1-1 formula. In other words, this truth is not meant just for those crisis moments in our life. God wants us to come to Him always–for everything.
So what do we need to do? We need to plant our feet at the door and start knocking (in faith)!