Which of you who has a friend will go to him at midnight and say to him, 'Friend, lend me three loaves, for a friend of mine has arrived on a journey, and I have nothing to set before him'; and he will answer from within, 'Do not bother me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed. I cannot get up and give you anything'? I tell you, though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his impudence he will rise and give him whatever he needs. Luke 11:5-8
I have met a lot of Christians. A. Lot. All over the world. And do you know what is true for 99.7% of all of the ones I have met? A struggle with personal prayer life.
Why is that? I think people sort of adopt this “God is going to do what God is going to do” mentality. Don’t get your hopes up, let’s just keep our prayers in the safe zone: God bless grandma, help me to have a good day. Amen.
I love the above story from Jesus, because it totally destroys our lame prayer mindset. It’s actually a humorous story. A guy shows up at his neighbor’s house, in the middle of the night (keep in mind that midnight in the first century meant nothing was happening except sleep). And what’s the big emergency…? He wanted a snack for his buddy. Three biscuits to munch on is hardly an emergency, hardly worth bothering your neighbor over. If you wake me up asking for a snack, you better run, because I am going to throw it at your head.
But this guy helps his friend out. Why? Because he is a great chum? No, it is because of the asker’s impudence. That’s another word for shamelessness. Uninhibited.
“I don’t care what time it is, I don’t care that you are sleeping, I don’t care that this can wait, I don’t care that it’s not even for me but actually for a guy you don’t even know, I don’t care that your kids are asleep - we need a snack. Come on, help us out. We need it. Please! If you can do it now, that would be helpful. Or we can give you a couple seconds to get it if you…”
“ALL RIGHT! Here’s your stupid bread! Beat it!”
The parable isn’t about the woken up guy, the parable is about the asker. More specifically, the parable is about the shamelessness of the way the guy brought his request.
The point is shocking: Be just as shameless when you bring your requests to God. Jesus goes on to say why: God. Will. Answer. (Grab your Bible and read verses 9-10 - I dare you!)
We are praying as a church Friday night (the 10th). Details are on the home page under “Events”. Join us.
And bring your impudence, oh shameless ones. God told us to! We are going to take his invitation to come boldly.
p.s. - Canned prayers not allowed, especially that “Now I lay me down to sleep…” prayer.