Jesus said to his disciples: “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”
Listen to this story seed. While on vacation, a 10-year-old boy ran away from his parents. After walking for hours feeling free, he found himself alone and hungry. He slept in an alley behind a restaurant. The next day, he fed out of the garbage can. He was too afraid to ask for help. He was ashamed that he didn’t listen to his parents and angry that they didn’t listen to him.
The boy didn’t know where to meet his parents in this strange city. He worried that if he drew attention to himself, someone would hurt him, or laugh at him, or force him into child labor. And so, he lived for three days in squalor and fear.
On the third day, an old woman talked to the boy and learned his name and his situation. She gave him some advice. She told him where to go to ask for help. “You must seek your parents,” she said. “You must knock on the door of the authorities who can help you. Do not be afraid.”
Aren’t we like this boy, at least to some extent? So many of us are sacred, hungry, and feeling alone. Oh sure, our situations are different. We have grown-up problems and struggles. But, still, in some ways, we are like this boy.
We have made mistakes. Others have made mistakes which have affected us. We don’t know what to do. We don’t know how to fix the situation. Many of us dream of running away and starting over.
There is an invitation to us this Lent. Reach out and knock on the sacred door. It is within your reach. Seek it and you will find it. Ask for what you need to find the peace and comfort, or the strength of our loving parent who is waiting for you. You don’t need to run away.
But let’s be honest. Some of us have asked for help from God and seemingly not received it. We have asked for the pain to stop, but it continues to be so intense we can hardly stand to be alive. We have asked for our children to get along with each other, but all they do is fight. It can be discouraging. We have asked, sought, and knocked, and things haven’t changed.
God doesn’t tell us how long it will take. Some things are easy and answers come quickly. Other times, we wait and wait with seemingly no response, then one day, the answer to our prayers arrives.
Or perhaps we are asking the wrong question, or seeking something that is not possible, or knocking on a door that is permanently shut. Sometimes no response is a response that it is time to try seeking something new.
Don’t be afraid to change what you are asking for. Ask God to guide you. Look for the little old lady to give you advice as well.
Now let’s take 30 seconds to water the seed…
What do you seek from God?