Sunday, September 27
Scripture: Zechariah 1-3, Luke 11
Luke 11:8 I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.
To teach His disciples to pray, Jesus tells a story about a midnight emergency. A man receives an unexpected guest at midnight and has no food to offer. Hospitality was a sacred duty, so he went next door and awakened his neighbor to ask for food. Jesus said that the neighbor gave him food not because of friendship (although they were friends), but simply because he had the “shameless audacity” to ask in the middle of the night.
This is the only place in the NT where this Greek word (anaideia) is used. It means, “without shame, impropriety, ignoring convention, shamelessness.” It has often been translated “persistence” because of the reference to knocking and the verses that follow that say, “keep on asking, seeking, knocking.” But the word itself doesn’t mean persistence, but a boldness that casts off social restraints, a shameless audacity that would lead one to bang on a neighbor’s door in the middle of the night.
Jesus is teaching us to boldly and shamelessly ask God for what we need. God welcomes our prayers! Jesus is not saying that we overcome God’s reluctance with our persistence. No! The problem is not God’s reluctance to answer, but our timidity to ask!
So ask! Ask boldly, freely, shamelessly…audaciously! Pray often and pray BIG! This is the first lesson in prayer. Pray! Pray with shameless audacity.
Prayer: Lord, forgive me for my timid prayers or lack of prayer altogether. Help me to pray often and pray BIG!