This is one of my favorite scriptures. Jesus tells us of the Father’s profound love for us. Jesus encourages us to be part of a special parent-child relationship. The Father knows what we need, but He invites us to ask, seek, and knock revealing our deepest needs to Him. He wants us to draw on our knowledge of how a parent will want the best for his child. He, in the same way, wants the best for us. When I was a child I thought this scripture of asking and seeking meant that my prayers would be answered the way I wanted them and in the time I wanted them done. Even as an adult I struggle with the mystery of prayer.
Three years ago my brother died from stomach cancer. It was a time of great sadness and pain for the whole family. In looking back, I see all the amazing ways God was with us in this ordeal. God encouraged many people to stand by Gerard. The Father gave us courage, strength, and kindness through the family and friends around us. When we couldn’t pray, others could. God remained faithful even when we were frightened or angry. Ultimately, Gerard was healed when the Father took him home to heaven. It took time to surrender to God’s plan.
Prayer is powerful. I’ve seen a friend have his hearing restored. I saw my mom freed from her grief. Prayer binds us to God and to each other. It transforms our lives. God becomes real. Most of my prayers are the asking, seeking and knocking kind. More and more time, however, is given to thanking, praising, loving and being still. In an old catechism, prayer was lifting your heart to God, but it begins with God‘s heart reaching out to us. Through Jesus we see how the Father is always asking us to follow Him, seeking us in the places where we are lost, and knocking on the door to our hearts.
-submitted by Madeline Longacker