A few days ago while dining at a local restaurant a large gentleman, poorly dressed came in and in a loud voice asked the manager if he could have a cup of coffee. He promised the manager he would be in Wednesday next week to pay for this one and another one. Hesitantly the manager said "Yes."

     As I slowly sipped my coffee, eyeing my pan cakes, I pondered the plight of a man making such a request. Where did he live? Was he homeless? Did he live under a bridge some where else? Perhaps he was on Welfare or receiving a small military pension.
     Finally I went to the manager and asked that he give the gentleman the coffee he requested, but with a full pot, also, like all the other customers. Then slowly and some what thoughtfully I add, "Why not just give him an order of whole wheat toast, also complete with jelly and butter. Also, cream for his coffee, if you will please. And, please add this to my account, and I will pay."  He looked at me, rather surprised, and said, "As you wish, Don."
     The rest of that meal and into the remainder of the day I pondered this man and his meager request and his station in life.  I was recalling an old story of a slave set free when the Civil War was over. When the old slave was freed, his former owner opened an account in the bank in the former slaves name for $1000 In those days that was a lot of money. At first the slave did not realize what his former master had done. When he finally realized that he had money in the bank, because of the loving generosity of his former master, the slave paid a visit to the bank. When directed to the appropriate personnel, the former slave asked, "Is it true that I have $1000 in this bank?" "Yes you do", replied the banker.  Large tears welling up in his eyes, the former slave the asked, "Can I get fifty cents?
     The former slave went away, not realizing he could have asked for more.  No doubt the gentleman who came into the restaurant asking for a cup of coffee could have arranged for more.
     All too often when we pray, we limit God by not asking for what we really want or really need. We limit ourselves by not asking for more. James cautions us, "Ye have not, because ye ask not."  Then there are times when we ask, but we do not expect heaven to be moved by our request. The Savior would cry into our hearts, "Oh, ye of little faith."  Such was the case with the Apostle Peter. Herod had imprisoned him. Some friends gathered to pray for his release from prison. Later, when Peter had been released, he came to their door and knocked. Acts 12:14 and following verses relates that Rhoda a damsel in the midst came to the door. Recognizing Peter's voice she ran back to tell everyone Peter was there.  But, they did not believe their prayers were answered.
     Are you guilty of praying for your wants and needs, but do not believe God will hear from heaven. But, we must remember Jesus promised, "Ask and ye shall receive; seek and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened." Never pray without faith, for it is with faith as of a mustard seed, that mountains are moved.   

Just a Thought Across The Garden Gate by Parson Don.




Updated May 28, 2010
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