How many times have you come to a place in your life when you need to know that a decision you’re about to make is not only the right decision, but the BEST decision? You’re more than just conflicted. You’re desperate for answers – for direction.
I think that we all have had moments in our lives when we’ve bowed our head in prayer because of a desperate situation. We need answers and we need them yesterday. We’re trying to make life decisions about what school to attend, who to marry, should we have another child, or the need of a new job.
It’s in these moments that I love to sing songs like Elevation’s Do It Again.
Walking around these walls
I thought by now they’d fall
But You have never failed me yet
Waiting for change to come
Knowing the battle’s won
For You have never failed me yet
Your promise still stands
Great is Your faithfulness, faithfulness
I’m still in Your hands
This is my confidence, You’ve never failed me yet
But the song ends, the emotional surge fades, and reality hits us square in the face once again. What do I do God? Where is my pillar of cloud by day and pillar of fire by night?
King David knew how to pray for direction.
O Lord, I give my life to you. No one who trusts in you will ever be disgraced, but disgrace comes to those who try to deceive others. Show me the right path, O Lord; point out the road for me to follow. Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you. —Psalm 25:1, 3-5
If we truly want God’s best, we need to stop and ask for direction. The Lord later told David, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you” (Psalm 32:8).
We need to believe that He truly does have a plan and purpose for it all…that He does want to guide us to live in His best…that He has plans to prosper us and not to harm us.
As Jesus finishes out his sermon on the mount he encourages us to be persistent in our search for answers, wisdom and direction.
7 “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8, NLT).
I love how the New Living Translation brings out the tense of the verbs “ask, seek and knock” telling us that they should be in continuous activity. Prayer is the never ending battlefront for the believer. This is why Paul challenges us to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Yet how often do we give up on asking, seeking, and knocking when we don’t receive an immediate response, or worse yet, an answer we don’t like? Yeah, I just said that!
Some commentators and translators tell us that the three verbs here have intentional indicators and motives behind them. We ask for what we wish or need; we seek for what we miss or have lost; we knock where we feel shut out.
I admit that I am going through the reality of this internal conflict right now. I need direction. I need wisdom. I need employment and financial stability. I’m feeling shut out of fulfilling my life purpose in ministry.
BUT…He’s never failed me yet. I’ve been here before. The struggle is real, but the hope of His answer, His supply, and His opening of the BEST door is my confidence.
Before you complete the application portion below, take a moment to listen to or watch Elevation Worship sing Do It Again. I love the powerful climax as they sing…
I’ve seen You move, You move the mountains
And I believe, I’ll see You do it again
You made a way, where there was no way
And I believe, I’ll see You do it again
What about you? Where are you right now in this process? Here are some questions for application and some Scripture for further reading. Don’t just sit on this! Be active in your asking, seeking, and knocking.
1. What do you need or wish for?
2. What are you missing or what have you lost?
3. Where are you feeling shut out?
4. What was James trying to tell us in James 1:5?
5. Continue ready Matthew 7:9-12 and journal your discoveries.