And he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread;for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.’And he answers from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.’
I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs. “So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish? Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Luke’s Gospel reminds us that the love God has for us is the love of a father. How many times are we disappointed because of unanswered prayers … things we pray to receive but are left without? “What father among you would hand his son a snake when he asks for a fish?”
God knows us better than we know ourselves; this is why we rarely win the lottery. God loves us unconditionally and seeks for us to have a deeper relationship with him and desires for us to live a joy-filled life. But how often do we not take the burdens of our lives to him and try to fix things ourselves? Or do we take the burdens and obstacles in our lives and place it at the foot of the Cross? Do we ask God to assist us in living a more joyful life? This is what the Gospel of Luke is telling us. It is telling us that God desires to give us the good gifts we need, but only if we ask for them.
—Joseph Hamaty is the Executive Director of Montserrat Jesuit Retreat House in Lake Dallas, Texas.
Lord Jesus, give me a more open heart. Help me to be more vulnerable and more open in my prayer. Give me the courage to fight any desire to be proud and think I can fix things myself. Lord, help me to be accepting of any unanswered prayers and trust in your infinite love and mercy for me. Give me an attitude of gratitude to not only recognize all the answered prayers in my life but to have a greater awareness of all the ways you reveal yourself to me. Lord Jesus, I know you only desire the best for me. Amen.