By JENNIFER BURGIN
Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you. Until now you have not asked anything in my name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete. “I have told you this in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures but I will tell you clearly about the Father."
Have you ever asked for a favor and the person never followed through? On the flip side: Has someone ever requested a favor from you and you blew it off like no big deal?
At the end of my sophomore year of college, we were in the process of vacating our dorm rooms. I needed help removing a heavy carpet rug from underneath my bed, so I pre-arranged for my boyfriend to come by one evening. When he failed to show up, I called him. I remember his rudeness and irritability as he yelled: "Jennifer, you're just going to have to find someone else to move that carpet! I'm too tired and don't have the time!" I slammed down the phone in anger and disgust. Since he refuses to help, I'm no longer his girlfriend! He can go where the sun don't shine!
How was I going to move the bed and the ugly pink carpet? (I cursed my roommate for leaving me stuck with her trash.) In desperation, I called one of my girlfriends. She agreed to come over very late that evening, and she removed the rug with all of her brawn and sweat. I was grateful for her assistance but evidently the "favor" was too burdensome. She never spoke to me again! I wrote her letters that summer and even enclosed a small gift of thanks. No response. To this day, I wonder if she'd remain a friend if I asked someone else to move the carpet?
Ask and you will receive..... In Adoration this week, I pondered these words further. The Lord doesn't grant our wishes like a Genie in a bottle. Sometimes we ask and the Lord tells us, "Nope! That's not for you! You are not ready for this yet." Maybe what we ask for is bad for our bodies. Maybe what we beg for is dangerous to our souls. Maybe what we cry out for will lead us away from grace. Our Lord desires our joy to be complete in Him and through Him. He wants to see our smiling faces in heaven someday! In the meantime, we should let go of our egos, hangups, pride, and selfishness.
The Holy Spirit whispers in our ears three simple words: patience, trust, hope. Be patient, trust in God's will and remain hopeful!
Unanswered questions We ask God many questions. Why do good people die too soon? Why so much poverty and starvation in the world? Why so much hate, corruption, and persecution in our global society? We wait to receive an answer; however, we hear silence. We don't understand God's plan, and we definitely don't know how Christ will judge us at the end of time. Despite the unanswered questions, we keep moving forward. Hopefully we are enjoying life to the fullest, praising God for our blessings even if we are unclear of how the past, present and future will work out.
All you have to do is ask... Sounds simple enough, right? We don't have to worry about Our Lord playing a game of fickleness like people we know. He remains constant, pouring out his unconditional love! We ask for forgiveness, he gives us mercy. When we ask for favor, he gives us grace. Remember there is a clear distinction between asking for material goods versus asking for spiritual goods. If it helps us grow in our faith, the Lord will provide.
"Let the water flow beneath the bridge; let men be men, that is to say, weak, vain, inconstant, unjust, false, and presumptuous; let the world be the world still; you cannot prevent it. Let every one follow his own inclination and habits; you cannot recast them, and the best course is, to let them be as they are and bear with them. Do not think it strange when you witness unreasonableness and injustice; rest in peace in the bosom of God; He sees it all more clearly than you do, and yet permits it."
This meditation was written by Jennifer Burgin, a Lay Dominican. Please visit her blog: Jennifer's Spectrum of Spirituality