Can I think out loud? Thatâ€™s what this is. Just thinking out loud. Don’t get all bent out of shape. I’m trying to work my way through something.
In my prep time for the community group I lead here in MN I was rocked a bit. More like floored. That happens sometimes. You know, when your little Sunday School answers don’t measure up to the truth you encounter in Scripture. When you read something that jams up the filter or smears the lense you have viewed Christianity through. Let me catch you up. We are talking about prayer (side note: Why do we have all of these lessons and stuff on prayer. Why not just do it???). So, I wanted to focus this week on what Jesus says about prayer in Luke 11. The chapter starts off with the disciples asking Jesus to teach them how to pray. So Jesus gives them the Lordâ€™s or disciples (however you want to take it) prayer. He then tells them the story of the neighbor that needs bread. You know, â€œFriend, I need bread. I have unexpected guests and I need to feed them.â€ The guy says back, â€œLeave me alone, Iâ€™m tired, my kids are in bed with me.â€ But Jesus says, â€œbecause of the manâ€™s BOLDNESS, the friend gets his neighbor bread.â€ So I decided to do a bit of research on what the word â€œboldnessâ€ means. I always had the picture of â€œboldnessâ€ being more like â€œperseverance.â€ You know, the neighbor just kept knocking on the door and wouldnâ€™t leave him alone until the guy gets out of bed. But that doesnâ€™t capture the true meaning of the word â€œboldness.â€ The word actually means â€œrecklessness, audacity, shamelessness, one who knows no restraint.â€ The ESV version uses the word â€œimpudenceâ€ instead of â€œboldness.â€ â€œImpudenceâ€ carries an attitude â€œmarked by cocky boldness or disregard of othersâ€ (Websterâ€™s). That pretty much stunned me. Still has honestly (thatâ€™s why Iâ€™m writing now). Why? Because Jesus goes on to say, â€œSo I say unto youâ€¦â€ Or â€œTherefore,â€ or â€œso because of that, you should do thisâ€¦â€ â€œSo I say to you, ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened for you.â€ Wait a second Jesus! What are you saying? Are you saying that I can approach God with a â€œreckless, audacious kind of boldness?â€ That I should expect God to answer my request just because? Me approach the Creator of the World, the one true living God, I AM, LORD of Hosts with a kind of attitude that says, â€œI belong here in your presence and believe you will give, help me find, and open the door?â€
Doesnâ€™t that just feel off? Doesnâ€™t it feel wrong? Presumptuous? Misguided? Shouldnâ€™t we humbly approach God? After all He is God right? We are not!
But for whatever reason, the Spirit has been telling me otherwise. He tells me Jesus can be trusted. I donâ€™t have to have it all figured out. I just need to believe Jesus… to take Him at His word… to have that type of faith in my Father. That I can come to Him for anything at anytime and feel like I belong there.
Well, sorry if I messed you up. But I feel better just getting those things off my chest. Thoughts?