Sunday, August 19, 2012
If you have an e-mail address, you’ve received a copy of Bob Perks’ poem, ‘I Wish You Enough’ – if you haven’t, click on the link and read the full story before you get to his poem. Beautifully stated, but there is nothing new under the sun. Agur (Solomon?) considered what it would be like to have too much or too little and wrote:
Two things have I required of thee; deny me them not before I die: Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain. (Proverbs 30:7-9 KJV)
An entire cottage industry was grown around Jabez’s granted prayer:
And Jabez was more honourable than his brethren: and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, Because I bare him with sorrow. And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested. (1 Chronicles 4:9-10 KJV)
The Lord granted to both Solomon and Jabez what they requested, cups filled and running over, so we look to them as examples for how and what we should pray. We forget that Solomon also wrote Proverbs, asking for ‘enough’, and Jesus said we should be asking:
Give us this day our daily bread. (Matthew 6:11 KJV)
Just a few verses before, Jesus tells us that God knows what we need long before we ask Him. Much more important than what we request is how we request it. Jesus begins His example with:
After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. (Matthew 6:9 KJV)
He closes with:
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. (Matthew 6:13 KJV)
Acknowledging God for who He is in our lives begins and ends Christ’s example. Most of the public prayers I hear do the same – words of thanks to God, our Father, and requests that His will be done, in the name of His son, Jesus our savior.
But, do we ask for enough? Or, too little? Maybe too much? How do we know what is enough? Do we miss opportunities for greater blessings by not asking? Those are questions running through my mind – and I continue to search for the answers. I am reminded that we’ve also been told:
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. (Philippians 4:6 KJV)
So, while the questions run through my mind, they cannot take away from my being in prayer with thanksgiving, acknowledging God in my life. He knows what I need, each day.