April 28 – Sermon on the Mount – Prayer and the Golden Rule

Read Matthew 7:7-12

We will never truly know how much God loves us until we stand before Him in Heaven. The Bible is full of passages describing, the best that human words can describe, the immeasurable love that God has for His children.

Do you ever wonder what it is truly like? How much more do you think God loves us than we have read in Scripture?

Our reading today describes, or proves, God’s love through the topic of answering prayer. When many people think of prayer and read certain passages of Scripture, they misinterpret that God is somehow obligated to answer whatever request you make.

Whereas we think God will or should answer “yes” to every prayer we pray, the promise is that:

“…the door will be opened.”

We have the opportunity to gain an audience with God Himself through prayer. When we bring our trials and issues before Him, He promises to hear us.

Where people are confused is when He doesn’t respond in the way they think He should. I know I have been there many times where I’m left saying, “I appreciate this and all…but this isn’t what I wanted.” As hard as it may be, we need to come to grips with the fact that God has a divine perspective. He knows what NEEDS to happen in our lives in order for us to become who He intended us to be.

He promises to take care of us. As fallen people, we even care for our children so, Jesus asks, why would we expect God not to do the same?

I’m sure this is the case for every parent, but I love giving my kids things. Kelly and I bought Mattie a Lego Hulk set and, seeing his eyes light up when we handed it to him, made me so incredibly happy. Did he NEED a new Lego set? No. On the other hand, God knows exactly what we need and promises to love and care for us through life’s many journeys.

A general rule of thumb when it comes to prayer is to be direct and ask God for what you need. However, be prepared for His answer. It may not be what you want but, rest assured, it’s what you need. He loves us so much that He promises to meet all of our needs…according to His view of our life. We need to trust that His plan is best for us and He will never lead us astray.

The implication of verses 7-11 is made explicit in verse 12. The perfect love of the heavenly Father is most reflected in His children when they treat others as they themselves wish to be treated.

“So, in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you…”

God has blessed us with so much that we would be missing the point by not extending that love to those around us.

After reading this section of Scripture, do you need to trust God’s plan for your life more than your own? Do you realize just how much He loves you? Do you trust that He will be with you through all of life’s trials? Have you internalized His love for you to the point that you are extending that love to others? If not, what steps are you going to take in order to do so?

Jake Lawson

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