Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Be Careful What You Ask For, You Just Might Get It
It has been said that prayer does not change God, it changes you. That is a very true statement and at the same time, when it comes to the prayer of Abraham in Genesis 18:16-33, it looks as if God changed His mind. (I must add because this blog is LGBT friendly, God did not want to destroy Sodom because they were gay. That's another discussion…)
Yes, God does not change, and God is not a man. At the same time, God has a lot of human traits, male and female. Contrary to most LBGT theologies, I don't refer to God as "He" AND "She". I view God as having a bit more male attributes than female, and when I have to chose one, I prefer to use "He". I do know a lot of sincere folks in LGBT circles that it helps their faith to view God as a she/he and I am not entirely opposed to that idea. That's also another discussion...
(rainbow pray-er design by Jason T. Ingram)
Anyway, sometimes God gives us what we want, even if it's not the best for us, just to show us what it's like. There are very few instances of this, and the one I think of is about how the early Israelites wanted a king when the Lord wanted to be King while there was a mediator (a judge) to stand in between God and people. The message was basically that a king will do bad things, but if you would rather want a man to rule over you then God, go ahead and see what happens.
Then there was the time when king Hezekiah was destined to die but pleaded to live longer. He got his request (in 2 Kings 20) when the prophet Isaiah heard God seem to change His mind. As a result, Hezekiah lived another fifteen years, and had a kid that caused a lot of messes.
Be careful what you ask for - you just might get it! One time when I was really into the prosperity movement, I thought God wanted to bless me with a big black SUV. Within weeks, I knew a guy that was getting rid of one and I thought it was a miracle blessing. It turned out to be a curse! It took me a long time to get the title, the giver wanted it back and was harassing me, it sat while I was at "straight camp" and I had to pay insurance on it for over a year without being able to drive it and I borrowed money against it that I could not afford to pay off. It was also hard to get rid of and had to put a lot of money into it to get it to sell while I was living out of state.
There is a New Testament principal that if we "ask amiss" like in James 4:3, we will not get our prayers answered. I am glad that a lot of the stuff I asked for I did not get! Sometimes I ask for something that is not God's will or that I ask with wrong motives. Another way at looking at John 14:14 where it says that if we ask anything in Jesus' name, we can see His name as being His will.
Ask the Father in Jesus name, and if it's not God's will, don't go banging on the gates of heaven, pleading for it because you just might get it and it will not make you happy. In fact it could really make a mess out of your life.