What is it that you want . . . more than anything? No, really. Think about it. Are you sure?
Nobody has to convince me. I know God is good to His very core. Yet every time I take a longer look, I realize He is SO MUCH GOOD-ER than good. (It’s a word, ok!)
God is a Father who loves us too much to simply extend to us that one solution that we think will fix everything. You see, He knows we have this propensity to think small, a little shortsighted, and mostly “in the moment.” Our Good Father knows our end from our beginning and never struggles to discern precisely what we need when we need it.
Take the lame man who begged passersby for money on their way to daily prayers (Acts 3). As Peter and John beat a path to their Temple spot, this man hollered for their attention. What did this crippled man want? What did he need? The invalid simply “wanted” and was “sure he needed” coins in his cup.
This guy was so consumed with getting change for his cup that he overlooked his deeper craving . . . change for his life!
The crippled man had suffered with this debilitating ailment since birth. He had lived with this condition for so long that he had stopped believing for the impossible.
Essentially, the lame man asked for just enough to keep him content in his condition. Sound familiar? We can grow so accustomed to our challenges that our belief for a miracle simply dries up.
Peter and John could not offer the needy man what he wanted. Peter said, “I don’t have any silver or gold for you. But I’ll give you what I do have. In the Name of Jesus, get up and walk!” (Acts 3:6)
“As soon as Peter and John prayed for him, the crippled man jumped up, stood on his feet, and began to walk! Then, walking, leaping, and Praising God, he went into the Temple with them!” (Acts 3:8)
Every person watching this scenario unfold knew this man had NEVER walked a day in his life! They had passed him for years on their way to the Temple. When this healed man walked into the Temple for the very first time, every spectator raced to watch. That glorious occasion became a defining moment of Faith for the man AND the masses.
What if God used Peter and John to give this guy what he thought he wanted? What if they had simply offered to him what this invalid was sure he needed? He would carry a cup full of coins AND a life full of deficit.
When I consider some of my prayer requests through the years, I realize my doting Father protected me with “no” or “not yet.” It felt cruel at the time, but getting a little further down the road provides clearer vision. He wasn’t withholding the good. God was actually extending His good. Now I recognize His generosity and faithfulness on full display. Sometimes it looks like God is neglecting our desires and ignoring our needs because we are too short-sighted to see where He’s leading.
When we live with this unshakable conviction that God is All-Knowing, Always GOOD, and completely ABLE, we will ask for the big things and trust His heart through the process.
What kind of change are you looking for? If we’re asking this All-knowing, All-present, All-powerful God to do a thing in our lives, let it be too big to fit in our cup. May it invade the totality of our constitution and overflow onto others as they extend their cup in our direction!