Just imagine what could happen if you took this gospel seriously. What if you really asked God for what God knew was good for you, and really sought to find his will for you, and knocked on the door so that God would come into your heart and soul more deeply and fully. That is what Lent is all about. It is asking God for what we need to grow spiritually. It is seeking to find God in every aspect of our life. And it is knocking to be allowed to enter the Kingdom of heaven.
In today’s gospel Jesus tells us that when we ask, we receive; when we knock the door is opened; when we seek, we find. But what happens when the roles are reversed? What happens when God seeks us, asks us to follow his will, knocks to be allowed into our hearts? Are we then quite as generous? Is it the case that we can be generous to God? It is not because this benefits God, but because it benefits us. Make your heart more open to God.
What do you want from God? What is it you are looking for? So much of our lives are spent seeking something. But we do not always know what it is. Sometimes we want success without effort. We want to be filled with things that make us empty. We want deep friendship or marriage without sacrifice. Today the people are asked just what they are looking for in God. And this is the question for Advent.
Today’s gospel from Luke continues lessons on the topic of prayer, which we have been focused upon this week. The emphasis today is about the power of perseverance, which might seem to be undone by the words at the end of the gospel which can be seen as suggesting prayer is really easy. “Ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” But the rub is that while the one who asks, receives, they may get something different than what they asked for. The one who seeks might find what they did not expect. The one who knocks may find the door opens to a different place. But prayer is first and foremost about Jesus. And by asking, seeking, knocking, we know we are never alone.