The Joy from Asking with Clarity

Asking (as opposed to remaining silent) within the context of any relationship is important. From the home to the office, the church to the restaurant, the bedroom to the dr’s office, the grocery store to the gas station, the marriage to the acquaintance, each relationship can bring much more joy when we ask for what we want or need.

The scriptures speak often of the principle of asking. One of those references is in James:

“… You desire but do not have… you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask… When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives…”

~ James 4:1-3

Too often we finally break our silence only when we have been sufficiently frustrated or angered, and by then our asking sounds like our motive for asking is pure selfishness or that we see it as a prime opportunity to imply to the other person that they are clueless, that they should have known what we wanted.

We sometimes act like our being made to ask is a terrible point to reach. I think we tend to not ask for what we want or need out of fear or pride (pride is one particularly powerful form of fear). At times asking can make us feel vulnerable (fear) or humiliated (pride).

However, especially in our marriage and family relationships, let’s be encouraged by the promise of scripture when it teaches:

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”

‭‭~ 1 John‬ ‭4:18‬

The promise is this: if we will lovingly do what is appropriate in a love-relationship, the fear will be driven away! “Love drives out fear” speaks of a sequence of events, first is the love-motivated action, second is fear’s departure in direct response to the first action.

Fear and pride may try to keep us silent but if we will proceed with a love-motivated request (“ask”), the fear and pride will lose their power over us. I know that we would prefer the sequence to be first the fear leaves, second the love-action (“ask”) can be done. But, war is never easy, and war is what we must wage upon our own fear and pride if we are going to enjoy what we can receive when we lovingly ask (James 4:1-3).

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#PastorsTip # James4 #1John4 #Ask #Fear #Pride #Love

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