“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8 NIV
When it comes to finding God there are many formulas out there. Some say you have to do this others say do that. A person can easily get confused. But Jesus made it simple. Listen to what He says one has to do to find God, and how He contrasted a very religious person you would think had God from a known scoundrel you would think could never have God, yet found Him:
“Then Jesus told this story to some who had great confidence in their own righteousness and scorned everyone else: “Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ‘I thank you, God, that I am not like other people-cheaters, sinners, adulterers. I’m certainly not like that tax collector! I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income.’ “But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ‘O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’ I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Luke 18:9-14 NLT
Wow, the despised tax collector the sinner found God. Not the Pharisee who boasted how good he was. The tax collector prayed the right prayer, the Pharisee didn’t. He simply asked God to have mercy on him, and admitted he’d done some bad things in life by calling himself a sinner. I know people who prayed the same kind of prayer this tax collector did and they found God too. They were at their wits end. They felt deep sorrow over how their lives were going and really wanted help to change things. They didn’t know what to do or how to change anything. So they cried out to God begging for help. And He let them know for sure that he heard them. They didn’t boast to God about all the great things they did in life like the over-religious Pharisee. On the contrary they felt deep regret over their failures and simply asked God for help. These types of prayers move God. And the folks who pray them lives have never been the same since. According to Jesus ANYONE CAN ASK GOD FOR HELP. If we come to him humbly like the tax collector did he will hear us, we will find Him.
There is this great misconception that you have to be this super good person who has it all together in order to find God. That’s not the truth. And by the way, there is no such person. There are many who think they are, but really:
“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.” Romans 3:23-24 NIV
Everyone has sinned or done what is wrong in life. Everyone falls short or messes up when it comes to living up to God’s good standard. So when someone like the self-righteous Pharisee (and there are many) brags about how good they are they’re really delusional. Don’t let people like that turn you off from finding and getting to know God. They’re just fake. That doesn’t mean you have to be. You can truly find God no matter what you’ve done or been through in this life. If you come to Him humbly he will accept you, and forgive you, just that easy. You will now be on the road to a better life and eternal life, yes.
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:16-17 NLT
Don’t worry about what’s the next step after this. God will show you what to do, trust Him. Take the first step: Pray to Him like the tax collector did.
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