Thursday of the 1st Week of Lent
Early on in life, we learn how to ask something. When we were babies, our parents are alert whenever we cry. It simply means we need something like nourishment or that we feel irritated because our diaper needs to be changed. When we grew as children, we learned to ask by pointing at things which we like and attracts us. Somehow we dictate our parents those which we like, especially toys. At times, our parents give in to our requests especially if it is a need and if they can afford them. As we grow towards becoming teenagers, we start to think on what to ask from our parents. Those who grew up as ‘spoiled’ in their earlier years would demand a lot even though at times they do not really need those things. Others think twice in doing so. As we mature in age, slowly we become more discerning on things that we ask for. Many circumstances are taken into consideration before acquiring something. Later on, we realize that we only ask whenever is necessary. We have become more discerning in making our requests.
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7 NAB) Our Lord Jesus gives us a lesson on prayer. We should ask our heavenly Father for what we need—and ask with persistence. This is an acknowledgment that without God we can do nothing. Yet this asking for what one needs is something that have made even pious Christians discouraged with God. When what they have asked for were not given, they tend to turn away from God and make conditions with Him. It is as if we are in control. Yet this is not the whole essence of these words of Jesus. He is telling us to be humble because God is in control. Our asking, seeking, and knocking is not according to our own rules and conditions. It is all according to His ways. We are not the bosses here, God is. He is telling us to ask with a childlike confidence from the Father. Jesus is challenging us to ask God, “How can I be truly your child?” He is telling us to seek not our own will but His in our life. Jesus is teaching us to seek what God wants from us. He is telling us to knock. Jesus is instructing us to knock at God’s Kingdom so that we may be able to enter. Once we are inside that Kingdom, we will be truly His children who knows what His will is for us.
Prayer is a dialogue with God. It is never a one-way thing that is why it is called a dialogue, a conversation. God speaks and we listen, then we speak and God listens. Prayer is an exchange of love from God with us which also urges us to respond in love to Him. Saint Teresa of Avila said that, “Prayer is nothing else than a close sharing between friends; it means taking time frequently to be alone with him who we know loves us.” Therefore in our asking, seeking, and knocking may we truly receive, find, and be opened in order to encounter God who is beyond whatever material things we may want for.
During this season of Lent, I propose these questions for deeper reflection. Spend time to converse with the Lord in silence. Let these questions guide us not only during this period but in every day of our life until we finally reach that Kingdom which Jesus promised to all of us.
A—ASK God to be His child: How can I be your child?
S—SEEK God’s will in your life: What do you want me to do with my life?
K—KNOCK at the door of God’s Kingdom: How can I be a part of your Kingdom?
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