Don't Ask! Unless you really want to know... In the Word 4-25

Don’t Ask- in His Word 3-25-16

Don’t ask, if you don’t really want to know!

“How are you?” “What’s up?” “What are you up to?” “How are you holding up?”
So many times people ask these questions rhetorically; they do not really want an answer.
There have been times I my life when people asked such questions that I just wanted to unload on them all my sorrow at loosing both parents 7 months apart; or the stress I was having raising three kids and home teaching them at three different levels of math and sciences and trying to be the best ever teacher plus Mom, and; but I knew they did not really want to know. It has become a greeting in the day we live to say as a statement of hello a question and it really bothers me.

Imagine yourself asking Solomon this only to hear this response:

I said to myself, “Come on, let’s try pleasure. Let’s look for the ‘good things’ in life.” But I found that this, too, was meaningless.  So I said, “Laughter is silly. What good does it do to seek pleasure?”  After much thought, I decided to cheer myself with wine. And while still seeking wisdom, I clutched at foolishness. In this way, I tried to experience the only happiness most people find during their brief life in this world. Ecclesiastes 2:1-3

Would you have taken the time to listen?
Or perhaps if you spoke to Paul while he was in prison and said “Hey Paul how are you holding up? “
His response was something like: “Well I have not eaten much lately because you have not sent me anyone with food, I could really use a bath, its been 90 days so far and a few of these sores on my feet and hands may be infected…”  Most likely, you would be at a loss for what to do. Seriously though, would you really have listened to him complain if he had? Or would you have asked him more about Jesus? Instead choosing to ignore the fact that he gave an answer to your rhetorical question; would you have given him hope and encouragement?  Maybe even food?

…or the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth: Colossians 1:5-6

Even Jesus had people ask him questions then not like hearing the answer.

As Jesus was starting out on his way to Jerusalem, a man came running up to him, knelt down, and asked, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked. “Only God is truly good.  But to answer your question, you know the commandments: ‘You must not murder. You must not commit adultery. You must not steal. You must not testify falsely. You must not cheat anyone. Honor your father and mother.”
 “Teacher,” the man replied, “I’ve obeyed all these commandments since I was young.” Looking at the man, Jesus felt genuine love for him. “There is still one thing you haven’t done,” he told him. “Go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” At this the man’s face fell, and he went away sad, for he had many possessions. Matthew 10:17-22

He didn’t like the answer but I am most certain that he did as was he was told because Jesus told him to. Jesus knew the man was not please, and in the following scriptures talked a bit about how we ask for things we do not want an answer to.
If you do not want to know the answer do not ask; but I say ask!

Jesus said ask and you will receive an answer!
 “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.. Matthew 7:7-9
So do ask, but just expect and answer when you ask. When we ask God for things not expecting an answer we are like a person who asks you ‘how it’s going’ without being sincere in their question.

Do not ask people randomly how they are without listening to the answer.
God asks us to change our life to follow Him, to stop trying to do things ourselves and to care about one another. If we love one another as we are loved by Him, and as we love ourselves then we are not going to be so generic in our questions or vague in our greetings. Take time this week and pay attention to how you greet one another. Is it with sincerity or generic?

Do you really care to hear the answer to what you ask?
Dear Heavenly father help us to seek the truth and learn to address one another truthfully in honesty and directly. Help us to know what we are asking for when we ask, seek and that we will find the truth when we listen for the answer. In Jesus name. amen

Suggested Reading: Matthew 7:1-28, Matthew 13:1-8, Matthew 10:1-33, Colossians 1:1-29.