Summary: Continuing series on the Sermon on the Mount (Christians are Abnormal) - Examines how God ansers prayer. Also suitable for Father's Day
CHRISTIANS ARE ABNORMAL IN HOW THEY VIEW THE FUTURE Matthew 7:7-11
We would like to say “thank you” this morning to all of you dads. It’s not always easy being a Dad. Man, it’s a great thing. It’s an exciting thing, but it is also a trying thing.
Recognize Dads and pray for them.
This is great promise. This a great encouragement to Christ-followers and God-trusters everywhere. To know that God hears us when we pray, to know that He not only hears, but that He also answers our prayers.
God is a good God. He is a faithful God. He is the all-powerful, all-knowing, ever-present God, and He knows and loves you, and knowing that makes the future not quite so uncertain, dark, nor frightening.
It was that knowledge that allowed Abraham to leave everything, and almost everything he knew and to head off to a land he didn’t know.
Abraham went out, not knowing where he was going, but he knew with Whom he was going. He knew his “Traveling Companion”.
Our Lord does not promise to change life for us; He does not promise to remove difficulties and trials, and problems, and tribulations. He does not say that He is going to cut out all the thorns and leave only the roses. No, He says that no matter what happens, we need not be frightened because He is with us.
And gentlemen, I would like you to notice the great privilege God gives you. He allows you to be His representative, His stand in, His ambassador, in your home and family.
Already in Matthew, Jesus has referred to God as Father 15 times. Now He talks about a man and his son and uses that as a representation of God and His children.
Gentlemen, do you realize that the type of Dad you are can twist, or skew your children’s perception of what God is like? Oh, how many people I’ve talked to who have been afraid of, or who have had no interest in a Heavenly Father, because of how sorry their earthly father was.
Gentlemen, model for your children and for the children in your neighborhood, what a true, a godly, a heavenly Father is like. Be loving. Set and maintain standards. Be consistent. Be just. Show grace and mercy. Demonstrate that you have priorities in your life other than how many planes you can shoot on your video game. Show your children that they are important to you, that you love them; but that God is the most important thing to you.
Paul says that men are to love their lives as Christ loved the church. Men, let your children see how much you love their mother and how important she is to you. Let them see you sacrificing some of your wants, hobbies or time for their mama.
Show them what a Heavenly Father is like.
Now, as we look at this passage, it says that we know how to give our children good gifts and that our Heavenly Father does an even better job. That means that this passage is not a blank check with God promising to give us whatever it is that we keep asking for. It may not be good for us. We may not be ready for it.
My brother Dusty gave me a 38 police special, some time back. Since I already have several pistols, Drew keeps asking me for that one and refers to it as his.
Now, the day may come when I give him that gun. And before you get all upset about a preacher talking about guns, go read the passage where Jesus tells His disciples that after He left they were to sell their cloaks and buy swords if they didn’t have one.
Guns don’t kill people, people kill people; just like they did before the invention of gunpowder.
Now, the day may come when I give that pistol to Drew, but being a Dad who knows how to give good gifts, I know he’s not ready for it, so I don’t give it to him.
The same is true of our Heavenly Father. I prayed for a long time for a wife and I was 31 before God gave me Gladys. I had almost given up hope. There were a number of other women I had prayed about, but God knew He had a special lady picked out for me who would be a great preacher’s wife, so He made me wait for the good gift He had selected for me.
If God had given me a wife before He did, I never would have appreciated the great gift He gave me. So, don’t wave these verses in God’s direction, believing He is promising to give you whatever you ask for a lot.