At a 1964 college student conference in Glorieta, New Mexico, I made this notation on the inside front cover of my Bible: “Though the mills of God grind slowly; yet they grind exceedingly small.” It is William Wadsworth Longfellow’s translation of an old Latin adage. The Civil Rights Era was stirring and many of us believed the long, grim night of racial oppression would soon be over. We also believed that we would “win the world for Christ in our generation.” We were wrong on both accounts. Which brings us to today’s passage.
Do you really believe verse 8? Do askers receive and seekers find? Are those who knock greeted with opening doors? Well yes, but askers must keep asking. Seekers must be persistent. Are your knuckles bloody yet?
Whether we believe in the Apocalypse or not, for many among us it feels like we’re the ones left behind. Especially after this past year. So we may find ourselves asking, “How long, O God?” (Ps 13:1).
Jesus assures his followers in this passage that God is not just his father, but our Father as well. God, our Creator, is the giver of good things to those who ask him. God has already given us good gifts in abundance even before we have asked: a beautiful creation which, with our faithful stewardship, can provide beauty and plenty for all; a loving Son and Savior to show us the way to freedom, justice, and mercy; a compassionate Advocate who graces us with gifts of faith, hope, and love, even in times of seemingly endless darkness; the living presence of our risen Lord!
What are you asking God for? What are you thanking God for? How are you helping God respond to the needs of your loved ones, your neighbors, our world?
Redeeming God, open our eyes to your presence. Stir our hearts and minds with your unexpected possibilities. Strengthen our will to do your will. Steady our feet in your paths of peace. Amen.