Twisting God’s Arm?

The Good News of Jesus is that God is our Father, and He loves us with a love beyond all imagining. As part of our filial response we are encouraged to ask our Father for everything we need. Why then does it often seem that He is distant, aloof, and we don’t really get what we want?

Lord God, who began the drama of life:

You invite us to ask for Your good things.

Why ask? Why not bestow Your gifts as

Part and parcel of what each day brings?


And if I ask, what exactly do I ask for?

Leave it general, so as not to be upset,

Or be very specific, awaiting next day

Delivery, like an order on the internet?


And does asking then change Your plan?

As if little me could affect the Eternal?

Or is this Lordy not for turning? Too high

And mighty to countenance my proposal?


Lord, You seem too far away, and faith

Is a hard road, bereft of comfort stops.

Your Church, of which I am a part, seems

To dig potholes instead of signs and props.


And if I ask and don’t receive, You advise…

Persistence? Surely You are not heedless,

Or slow to come to Your children’s voice?

Sitting on the fence, simulating deafness?


Persistence smacks of a reluctant heart,

But Jesus calls You ‘Abba’, prodigious in

Your love. Why should I have to repeat

Myself? A case of Goliath arm wrestling?


If I must persevere, and You are so keen

To respond, what’s the dynamic here?

Is my persistence then, to effect a change

In me? To be persuaded of Your steer?


Have I to tune in to a divine wavelength,

By constant prayer, rising from my heart?

To get, not what I had wanted, but what

You had already intended from the start?


Is the miracle then, to recognise Your hand,

And, cooperating with Your plan, incarnate

The Kingdom in this fractured, fallen world,

Enabling love to pierce the smog of hate?


For my wisdom is like an infant’s babble,

And my petition, a child’s Christmas plea,

But You delight in such, doting Father,

While not colluding with human duplicity.


Instead then of trying to twist Your arm,

And sulking when my wants are unmet,

I need to confidently ask for my ‘good’,

Knowing that Your ‘better’ will come yet.