15 May 2012

Luke 11:1-13

"How much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask" (v. 13)


Very sadly there are far too many children who today do not receive good things from either their parents or carers or even anyone else: one child without good love and care is one child too many. How grievous must our heavenly God, the divine parent, find this.

We are called on to become like children in order to be part of God's kingdom: to trust, to live happily and to enjoy one another's company. However these childlike qualities can soon become worn down as we grow older and experience the world as it is. The ravages of our modern world can take us away from the fundamentals of good living. We can easily forget about the things that keep us in the bright sunlight of hope and joy that children can show us.

Many people today fear taking action against bad things even though they know in their heart of hearts that things such as child abuse are wrong. Often they think that it is someone else's responsibility to do something. If everyone recognised such abuses as evil and knew that they were not alone in thinking that, how much safer the world would be for these little ones and all of us, since it would be most unlikely that the signs of abuse would pass unnoticed.

So today's passage about persistence in prayer, asking for the gift of the Spirit for discernment from which action follows can perhaps be linked to the call to each to us 'to do all the good we can, give all we can and thereby save all we can' ... Wesley's trilateral on money turned round to meet the scourge of today, abuse perpetrated by human beings upon human beings ... all being God's children.

Today is part of Christian Aid Week, which has taken as its theme: "Let's give the tools to help people out of poverty". Let us pray that we will be given the tools to overcome the evils of this world so that good will outweigh any nastiness and the bells of heaven will ring out rejoicing at Ascensiontide that the Son of God has gone up on high and all is much better with the people working for the kingdom below.

To Ponder

Prayerfully reflect over times when you have seen wrong doing and:

- did nothing believing it was someone else's job
- did something and found you could not cope
- did something and knew you had made a difference.

What did you learn from any of these experiences? What will you do differently next time?


Bible notes author

Margaret Sawyer

Margaret Sawyer has worked for the Methodist Connexional Team for ten years, first as connexional secretary for Women's Network and then as the Church's equality and diversity officer. She now works to support preaching and worship in her local circuit and district.