How To ASK
"Ask” is one of those little words that goes largely unnoticed, because it seems clear to everyone what it means, what it is all about. “Just ask!” is an instruction that doesn’t appear to demand too much thought.
However, “asking” can be taken for granted. It is sometimes treated as if it was a lesser form of prayer than what is called “intercession.” The fact that it comes at the beginning of Jesus’ sequence of “Ask…seek…knock” leads many to the assumption that it is a starting point but something of less maturity than seeking or knocking.
All intercession, by definition, has “asking” at its root. Different words are sometimes used to catch the different nuances of asking, like “pleading” or “beseeching” or “inquiring” or “desiring” or “seeking after” to name but a few.
The different words basically describe different kinds of asking.
But let’s ask some questions about “asking”!
What does the Bible have to say? Is it possible to talk about a “theology of asking”? What about the Godhead? Is asking part of the communication of the three persons of the Trinity?
What does God ask of me? What does God actually ask me to ask? Are there things that God suggests we shouldn’t ask for? What about our asking? What? When?
How? Why? What are God’s responses to my asking? What informs my asking?
Are there kinds of asking that are not answered? Are there preconditions to our asking? Are there answers we can expect to our asking? What about the whole subject of “answering”?
The subject of “asking” raises a lot of questions!
There are hundreds of verses in scripture that deal with “asking” and that in one way or another, provide a substantive basis for addressing some of these questions.
How do we ask?
- We worship God acknowledging He is the only One who can answer prayer! Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Ephesians 3:20-21
- We wait on God to show what is on His agenda for prayer for the Church, neighbourhood or nations. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. James 1:15
- We listen to God through His Word, allowing the Holy Spirit to give understanding. The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of God has been given to you. Luke 8:10
- We pray with fervency what we have received from meditating on the word of God. Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7
- We thank God, believing He answers in power. We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, because you have taken your great power and have begun to reign. Revelation 11:17