“What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead of a
fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?”
- Luke 11:11-12
This passage uses the image of a hungry child to demonstrate the natural relational dynamic God has designed in us: for children to look to our parents when they are in need, and for parents in turn to respond to the needs of their children. Most of us have been fortunate to be on the receiving end of that type of dynamic enough times for it to be familiar.
It’s a rhetorical question though, inviting us to consider the unthinkable alternative. But none of us have had perfect parents. Some, more than others, have not had needs met in their early years. The gifts our parents leave us with are not always helpful ones. It’s a heartbreaking reality in our broken world.
But what this passage really tells us about is God, our perfect heavenly Father: if we run to him with our needs, He can be trusted to respond with abundant love every single time! Is there anything you’re not asking God for because you’re afraid of how he will respond?
Consider WHAT you are asking.
In the passage, the child is asking his Father for a fish or an egg. The unthinkable cruelty of a parent denying their child food, the stomach-twisting unnaturalness of it.
This is how we are told God feels when we cry out to Him — it’s just not in His nature to deny His children something good! But might He say no? Yes, that’s possible too. We can be confident that His ‘no’ is just as good and right as His ‘yes’. How many of us can think of something we are grateful our parents said no to? I know I can! As the perfect parent, God knows better than any of us when to put a healthy boundary in place. He knows when something else is even better.
Consider WHO you are asking.
The idea of a parent who responds only with love, wisdom and patience when we cry out to Him is too often far from our earthly experience. But scripture can help us to understand the nature of God and we can begin to understand this family we have been bought into. We are free to bring our needs and desires to God, trusting God’s plans for us.
I encourage you not to hold back any more! Stretch out your hands in faith, knowing that your perfect heavenly parent is compassionate and trustworthy.