Our Heavenly Father Knows What We Need
Inside: We have a God who always gives His children what is good because He knows exactly what we need.
Some of us may have had some great Fathers. I think my husband is a pretty great dad and grandpa, and I’m going to move it into the parents in general here since I’m a mom and grandma. I love my kids; they are probably the people I can be most selfless with. They are the ones I most easily sacrifice for, and I would give my life for them. I love them with great love, but my love for them comes nowhere near God’s love for them.
I reminded them and now remind my grandkids of how much I love them, but it is beyond my comprehension at times that God loves them even more than I do. I think I know what’s best for them, but God is the only One who truly knows what is best for them.
John MacArthur stated:
“The greatest human parental love cannot compare with God’s. There is no limit to what our heavenly Father will give to us when we ask in obedience and according to His will.”
Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent?Matthew 7:9-10
In Biblical times a loaf of bread didn’t look like ours today – it was round and flat, so picture here something more like a pita or tortilla so it could be mistaken for a stone. Another interesting thing to note here was when Satan tempted Jesus in the wilderness in Matthew 4:1-4 he tempted him to turn a stone into bread.
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.3 And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” 4 But he answered, “It is written,
“‘Man shall not live by bread alone,Matthew 4:1-4
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
His following illustration is interesting too.
Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent?Matthew 7:10
A serpent, also translated as a snake, is dangerous; more harm would come to the child over the snake from the rock. They may break a tooth or two on the stone, but a snake could harm them.
Jesus is making this extreme illustration to remind us our Lord doesn’t try to deceive us, but He may not answer our prayers how we think He should.We have a Heavenly Father who knows what's best for us, and He is always working all things out in our lives for our good and His glory.
When we think of our children asking things, and we say no, it’s because we love them and believe we know what’s best for them. No parent would give their 12-year-old the keys to the car or would let their six-year-old play video games all day. We don’t give our children everything they ask for because, as their parents, we desire what’s best for them.
We have a Heavenly Father who knows what’s best for us, and He is always working all things out in our lives for our good and His glory.
We can get caught up in the good things being just material things or good health (and don’t get me wrong, those are sweet gifts from the Lord), but our God is focused on our spiritual growth, our growth in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). (See also the prayers of Paul in Ephesians 1:15-23, Colossians 1:9-14, and Philippians 1:9:11.)Jesus continually sought out God's provision in His life, and if Jesus, being perfect, had to do it, how much more do we?
We have a God who always gives His children what is good because He knows exactly what we need.
There is a poem that captures this so well:
I asked for health that I might do greater things;~ Author Unknown
I was given infirmity that I might do better things.
I asked God for strength that I might achieve;
I was made weak that I might learn to obey.
I asked for riches that I might be happy;
I was given poverty that I might be wise.
I asked for power and the praise of men;
I was given weakness to sense my need of God.
I asked for all things that I might enjoy life;
I was given life that I might enjoy all things.
I got nothing I asked for but everything I hoped for;
In spite of myself, my prayers were answered—
I am among all men most richly blessed.
Yes, God always gives us what’s best for us.
Our God delights in giving His children those things for their good and His glory. Seeking Him in prayer is how the Lord appoints these mercies to us. Jesus continually sought out God’s provision in His life, and if Jesus, being perfect, had to do it, how much more do we? We need to begin praying today not to get just “good things” but to be more like Jesus.
Listen in to EP 141 Ask, and It Will Be Given (Matthew 7:7-12 – Sermon on the Mount Series):
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