One of the things Anna and I have learned to do over the years, especially when we find ourselves in a difficult season, is to remind Jesus of what he himself tells us to do…and then we do it! Jesus tells a story on the heels of his famous, Lord’s Prayer. In fact, when he tells this story he is still answering the question of his closest companions when they ask him, “Lord, teach is to pray.”
“Then he added, If any of you has a friend, and goes to him in the middle of the night and says, ‘Lend me three loaves, my dear fellow, for a friend of mine has just arrived after a journey and I have no food to put in front of him’; and then he answers from inside the house, ‘Don’t bother me with your troubles. The front door is locked and my children and I have gone to bed. I simply cannot get up now and give you anything!’ Yet, I tell you, that even if he won’t get up and give him what he wants simply because he is his friend, yet if he persists, he will rouse himself and give him everything he needs. And so I tell you, ask and it will be given you, search and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you.” (Luke 11:5-8 JBP)
I love that the sleepy man in the story goes from not giving his neighbor anything to giving him everything he needs. That’s quite a shift! I suspect the man needed more than just the 3 loaves and the neighbor gave him whatever he asked for once the door was open. Norman Grubb comments on this story in his book, The Law of Faith. “If an unwilling friend can thus be forced to be generous, what about a willing Father? Surely Christ exhorts, not to caution and hesitation, but to great boldness in prayer, coupled with great humility.”
After this story involving the two neighbors Jesus plainly tells his friends to ask, search and knock. Each request comes with a promise: “The one who asks will always receive; the one who is searching will always find, and the door is opened to the one who knocks.” (Luke 11:9 JBP) A few weeks into Anna’s cancer diagnosis we often find ourselves reminding Jesus what he told us to do: ask, search, knock, and then we do it over and over and over. We then remind Jesus of his own promise to our asking, searching and knocking. Please continue to pray with us and remind Jesus of his own words from this story. Knock, knock.