Ask …. seek …. knock.
Ask and it will be given to you.
Seek and you will find.
Knock and the door will be opened.
These words of Christ that have been both a comfort and a challenge to me over the years. It would seem that now, though, they are becoming increasingly more of a challenge than a comfort. It is easy to run these words off to ourselves and others as an indication of a warm comfortable promise but, on both a personal and ministry level, I am finding the warm comfort has shifted to allow more of the hot prodding poker of a challenge.
As I think around, and reflect upon, these words of Christ I am discovering that these words of Christ demand a certain level of authenticity from me. They demand an authenticity in understanding that there is no point in asking if you think you already know the answer. An authenticity that refuses to seek or search for something if you are not prepared to accept, and act upon, what you find. An authenticity that will not knock on the door until you are willing to step inside, and stay awhile, should you be invited.
I have come across quite a few people, over the last few months, who are struggling with faith, truth and life. They are experiencing stuff that is not compatible with their current belief system or developed faith. I wonder, though, whether they are actually struggling with faith as such, or whether they are struggling more with their discoveries from their asking, their seeking and their knocking.
You see, this lifestyle of question (ask), explore (seek) and introduction (knock) can cause us problems. Only the other day a Christian friend asked me about some issue that they feel they cannot raise in their church because the very raising, or asking, would bring a negative reaction. I believe this is why pub theology, a safe and accepting place to question and explore, has worked so well.
If what we believe is the truth then it will, stand up to re-analysis in light of experience. I don’t think with the the ask, seek, knock thing that was Jesus suggesting that this was supposed to be a one off event, but more of a lifestyle choice? I can’t be sure, and maybe others can argue for the one off event thing … but I’m going to go with the lifestyle choice one …
To do that we must be prepared to change depending on what we may find as we question, explore and introduce ourselves. God is not in a tidy little box and neither can the love and pain of Gods creation be squeezed. Every time we encounter God we are changed … it’s inevitable …. God IS never-changing …. but as we ask seek knock maybe our understanding changes
So … Ask … seek … knock …. and see what happens!