january 22 - How Much more?
"Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! Matthew 7:7-11 (NKJV)
I need to start by stating that I am aware that not every child grows up with a father in the home, and even if there is a father in the home, not every father is loving and kind. I was blessed to have a father in my family; and my father was both loving and kind. He was a great example of what it means to be a faithful husband and a good father.
My brother (Dan), who is three years my junior, was always “big” for his age and so, we were always about the same physical height and weight growing up. As you can imagine, this led to a never-ending struggle for dominance. Competition was part of our daily routine. As a young teenager my family went camping at Granite Creek. (Wyoming) Dan and I went down to the creek with my dad and we began to skip rocks. Dan had a great throw and the rock skipped around 14 times—impressive. Of course, not wanting to be outclassed, I found the perfect rock and proceeded to throw that rock with some extra mustard.
Somehow, the extra effort threw off my coordination and the rock got hung up in my hand. When I released the rock it flew through the air for about 15 feet before burying itself into my dad’s lower back. The rock hit my dad with enough force that it knocked him down to his knees. (There was a moment of shocked silence in my universe) Dad was bent over in obvious distress trying to catch his breath. He slowly got to his feet, turned around, looked at me
directly and said, “Son, next time you throw a rock you need to be a little more careful.” That is all he said…that is all he ever said about that incident.
I know what it is like to have a good father. The question that Jesus asked brings us to the character of our Heavenly Father. “If you then, (earthly fathers) know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” Let me tell you what this means to me personally: It means that I have really, really high expectations and faith in my Heavenly Father. My dad is great—so, how much more can I expect from the God who the Apostle John describes in one word… “Love.”
Author’s Note: My dad showed a lot of grace in many different situations throughout my upbringing. He was and remains my hero. He set a great example of what it means to live life with an abundance of integrity. He demonstrated grace when under fire. I guess you could say that I have a high opinion of my dad. Scripture indicates that my Heavenly Father is perfect in character and so, to the question of “How Much More can I look to God with high expectations?” Beyond my human comprehension. RJD