What is the use of trusting God ?
Matthew 7: 7-8
7 – Ask and you will receive; search and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. 8For everyone who asks receives; those who seek find; and the door will be opened for whoever knocks.
Dear brothers, this verse is well known to us Christians. Many of us may even be in the habit of reading this verse periodically, to reinforce confidence that God, our father, provides not only what we need, but also what we ask in faith.
Jesus clearly tells us that God is ready to give us everything we ask:
13And whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Son may reveal the glorious nature of the Father.
We are not going to go into the question of this “everything”. For now, let’s trust and have faith: this “everything” is really everything we ask for “in the name or for the cause of Jesus”. I ask that everyone at that moment forget the possible doubts and imagine that they trust God completely. Now let’s reflect on the theme of today’s message: What is the use of trusting God?
Remember two interesting cases:
1. The paralytic taken by his friends: Jesus forgave man’s sins and then healed his body.
2. The adulterous woman who was delivered by Jesus from a violent death and then had her sins forgiven.
In both cases, Jesus took care of the earthly (bodily) and the spiritual (forgiveness of sins, salvation).
Now, to reflect, let’s see 2 examples of requests made to Jesus in an incomplete way and which were still answered.
Luke 7: 1-9
1When Jesus finished saying these things to the people, he went to the city of Capernaum. 2 There was a Roman officer there who had an employee whom he held dear. The employee was seriously ill, almost dead. 3When the officer heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish leaders to ask him to come and heal his servant. 4They went to speak to Jesus and asked him insistently: – This man really deserves your help, 5for he esteems our people very much and even built a synagogue for us.
6Then Jesus went with them. However, when he was close to the house, the Roman officer sent some friends to say to Jesus: – Sir, don’t worry, because I don’t deserve you to enter my house. 7And I also think that I do not deserve the honor of speaking to you personally. Just give an order, and my employee will be fine. 8I am also under the authority of superior officers and I have soldiers who obey my orders. I say to one: “Come on”, and he goes. I say to another: “Come here”, and he comes. And I also say to my employee, “Do this”, and he does it.
9Jesus was greatly amazed when he heard this. Then he turned and said to the crowd that followed him: – I say to you that I have never seen so much faith, not even among the people of Israel!
Brothers, let’s analyze what happened here. This man was a respected authority. He had soldiers and servants under his command. He could have sent any of his employees to speak to Jesus, but he didn’t. He sent “Jewish leaders” to speak with Jesus. Here is the first show of respect: he sent people from the same people as Jesus, he was concerned about that.
When he heard that Jesus was coming to his house, he again sent some friends to say to Jesus “… I do not deserve the honor of speaking to you personally …”. He knew he was a sinner, probably killed many men in battles and humbled himself to the point that he did not want to be in the presence of Jesus who was not even an authority for the Jews! See that he shows a lot of faith.
However, his faith was limited to the carnal plane, for he believed that Jesus could heal his servant’s sick body, but he did not believe that Jesus could forgive his sins!
Let us also not be limited to the earth plane. Sometimes we pray for many things in this world: jobs, health, healing, conflict resolution, and we forget to pray for our salvation and the salvation of others. We have faith, strong faith and trust in God, but in a limited way.
Now let’s look at another example: Lazarus, a friend of Jesus, became ill and died. Jesus had been warned of Lazarus’ disease and decided to wait for the right moment to go there, as he had plans for this event.
John 11: 20-24
20 When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him. But Maria stayed at home. 21Then Martha said to Jesus:
– If you were here, my brother would not have died! 22But I know that even so, God will give you everything you ask of him.
23 – Your brother will be resurrected! Said Jesus.
– I know he’ll be resurrected on the last day!
Brothers, at this moment Martha confirms her trust in Jesus for eternal salvation, but confesses to feeling the absence of the Master in her earthly life. I believe she was so used to hearing Jesus speak of the kingdom to come, that she no longer thought that the Master was there in “flesh and blood”. Martha trusted Jesus for salvation and believed in the resurrection of the dead on the day of Jesus’ return. She even remembered what Jesus had said (verse 22), but she did not understand “everything”.
Both Martha and Mary were so focused on the future kingdom of God that neither asked Jesus to bring Lazarus back. However, comments began to arise in the crowd (John 11:37) about what Jesus could have done. Everyone was waiting for a position from the Master who finally prayed to God and, to the glory of the Father, called Lazarus out.
Brothers, we need to remember that Jesus is always with us! Everything that is asked of the Father “by the name of Jesus” will be granted to us. This means that whatever serves the glory of God, He will give us! That is why we must pray in prayer for everything we desire, as it may be that many of our desires are inspired by the Holy Spirit, thus being for the glory of the Father. We must also ask for wisdom to understand and accept when something is denied us.
Jesus promised us his peace, a peace that transcends human understanding and He knows that our human heart has desires.
12Hope delayed makes the heart sick, but the desire fulfilled fills the heart with life.
This is a high risk that we have to take. We need to ask God for what we want, but we need to be prepared to understand God’s timing. That time is not in our control, so the importance of trusting God. Jesus knows our human nature and is able to forgive when we fail, as long as we continue to believe.
Genesis 17: 15-17
15Then God said to Abraham, “From now on, don’t call your wife Sarai anymore, but Sara.” 16I will bless her and give you a son, who will be born of her. Yes, I will bless her, and she will be a mother of nations; and there will be kings among their descendants.
17Abraão knelt down, put his face to the floor and started laughing when he thought: “Can a hundred-year-old man be a father by any chance? And will Sara, in her nineties, be able to have a child? ”
Even Abraham, father of faith, had his confidence shaken and yet God was faithful to the promise he had made. Why would He not be faithful in our lives?
Let us pray together:
Father, thank you for always being by our side. Thank you for knowing us so well that even when our trust is incomplete, the Lord remains faithful. Forgive us, Father, our weaknesses and comfort our hearts with hope and trust in the name of Jesus. Amen.