WHO, OR WHAT, IS RELIABLE?
I want to ask a question of you today. This is a question for which you may have a ready answer. However, it is a question that should not be answered without some thought and deliberation of mind. So, ponder the question. Mull it over in your mind.
Are you ready for the question? Here it is.
What, or who in your life can you depend upon? I mean fully, totally, depend upon, rely upon, and know without a doubt that that person or that thing will always, without fail or hesitation be there for you. One hundred percent – plus – they (person or thing) have your best interests at heart and will come through for you. Do you have that person, or thing, in your life?
Well, first, let’s look at “things”. Material things we need to help us get tasks done; things that make our lives easier and more enjoyable; things which are manmade and, while they may be durable, may still break, wear out, get lost, or become obsolete.
What about persons? We have all heard of, or maybe have experienced, “fair weather friends”. They are fun to be around, they enjoy the same things you do, and you grow close to one another. Up to a point. Then, trouble comes your way. Hardship prevents you from providing what you previously were able to share with this friend. And, just when you need a close, caring, understanding one to lean on, he/she leaves you to fall on your face, rather than being there with a shoulder to cry on, or to lend a listening ear.
I believe we have all experienced, one or more of the situations listed above. This, of course, is not to say that there are not those persons in your life who are there to help, comfort, and advice you in your time of need. You are blessed if you do have that person. Things, however, are a horse of another color. Because they will never be there to listen to your cry for help or to assist you in your time of need.
But thankfully, there is a bright side to all of this. We, as Christians, followers of Jesus Christ, do have that person who is always there for us. That, of course, is Jesus Christ Himself.
We are told in 1 John 5:14 – “And this is the confidence we have toward Him, that if we ask anything according to His will He hears us.” (NASB) The NIV reads as: “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”
There are two key phrases in this verse. First, “confidence we have”, and then, “according to His will.”
Confidence here carries the meaning of coming to Jesus boldly and openly. We should be bold in our coming to Him. We come, not in the attitude that, “I deserve what I am asking for”, but with the assurance that He will hear us.
And, as we come boldly before Him with our petitions, we must be very sure that we understand that our asking is subject to His will. This indicates that we ask, in anticipation that He and we are in one accord – with the same mind – with one another. In other words, as we come, we ask with hope that our request is in His will.
If we come demanding what we want because we are convinced that is the best answer or solution, we can be sorely disappointed. He knows, and sees, the full picture. He sees any situation from beginning to end.
Our confidence must not lie in our own desire or expectation, but in the knowledge and understanding that He will hear us. We, as parents, when our children come to us with a request and we can foresee problems or danger, will deny their requests. As we come boldly before God to ask, He will always hear us. He will answer, however, according to His will and for our best interest.
Just as a parent saying no to a child’s request because he/she knows it is not best for the child, God treats His children In like manner. He answers according to His will. That is actually one of the greatest blessings we receive from God.
If we think back on some of the things we have brought before Him and see the outcome of the situation, we can be very thankful that He answered according to His will.
Gary K Fair