“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.” Matthew 7:7-8
Ask, Search, Knock.
Three tiny word pictures disarming in their simplicity. If you want something then ask for it. If you want something badly, go look for it. If you want something desperately, pound on the door until you get an answer.
Are we supposed to read it as a increasing measure of urgency?
Or as three different ways of approaching the same problem? You can ask, you can search, you can knock….whatever you do, do it to find what you want.
There’s also an element of “want to” about all this> Do you want to? How much do you want what Jesus has to offer? Does it all have to be handed to you on a plate? Jesus described it as “treasure” that has to be sought; or “a pearl of great price” which may be worth laying everything down for to possess?
Sometimes the very words of Jesus seem spoken just to invoke curiosity.
I think God wants us curious. He wants us to come looking. He wants us to “search, and ask and knock” not because he is capriciously withholding the good from us but because he desires our desire.
I heard a preacher ask the question “How big is your want to?”
We live in a culture that is saturated not only with a consumerist way of thinking, but the urgent pull towards instant gratification. “I’m living in a material world, and I’m a material girl.” “I want it and I want it now.”
So we do understand what it is to want something. God understands that part of our make-up. He made us after all. It’s just a matter of being careful what you wish for…. Does that thing that you want have real value?
And from the other side, Jesus said, If you being evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will God give to you…
We know all about wanting, and we know all about giving too.
So Jesus takes something very basic, very natural… something right at the heart of our everyday world… and he asks (as he always did) the pertinent question. How much do you want God?
Because if you really ask, or search, or knock, then God will not withhold himself. He will not. He cannot. He is your father and he loves you.
Ask and you will receive. Search and you will find. Knock and the door will be opened.
But how big is your want to?