There was a man once, who asked God to give him the perfect job. And what is this perfect job that he was looking for? Well, we know, don’t we? Get paid a lot to do very little and have lots of time to spend with his family.

Now, I’m going to pause for a moment and take a poll here. Hands up those of us who would consider those employment terms as being a dream. You would, wouldn’t you? We all wish we could balance family and work better. We all wish we could be there for our spouse and children more often. We all wish we didn’t have to miss our children’s piano recital because of work. Yet, pay the bills, we must; so it would be a dream if a job allowed us to do both, wouldn’t it?

So what did God do? He gave the man exactly what he asked for. He got hired by a multinational and worked from home. There was work to be done, but because all he needed was his laptop, he could just about work from anywhere. And that meant that he could still send the wife to work, drop the kids off at school, pick them all up again and even bring his mother-in-law for her doctor’s appointment, all while still drawing a handsome salary.

I am starting to feel a good many cynical brows being raised at this point because this is just too good to be true, isn’t it? But bear with me and you’ll soon see what I’m getting at.

Now, if you were that man, and our loving Father in Heaven gave you exactly what you wanted, how would you feel? Life would be perfect, wouldn’t it? So how do you think the man was feeling?

Yes, you’re right. He wasn’t happy. Every time there was news of possible restructuring in the company, he got worried that because he worked from home, his work wasn’t visible enough and he would be the next to get axed. Every time the bosses went a little quiet, he got worried that because he wasn’t near to the powers that be, they were finally influenced by his competitive colleagues and so were plotting to remove him. And it got so bad that he started thinking about leaving.

Mind you, his bosses had never said anything harsh against him. In fact, never an unkind word was ever spoken to him, and yet…

Strange, isn’t it? With God, we all have our Christmas list. There are things that we always pray for. But if we are really being honest with ourselves, we don’t expect half of them to be answered. They’re like the pony that we asked our parents for when we were kids; the ones we knew we were never going to get. And often, because it’s just too ludicrous or too outrageous to ever be good for us, we don’t get them. And when we don’t get them, it gives us an excuse to turn around and say things like ‘God doesn’t answer prayers’ or ‘He only helps those who help themselves’.

But when He finally does answer, and gives us exactly what we asked for, and life is good because of it, how many of us really bask in the full glory of His blessing and enjoy it for what it is, to the full?

Now, don’t feel bad. If you are beginning to identify with what I’m talking about today, you’re not the first, and you’ll certainly not be the last. Remember Abraham and his wife Sarah? Remember what they asked for?

“But Abram said, “Lord God, what will You give me, seeing I go childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” Then Abram said, “Look, You have given me no offspring; indeed one born in my house is my heir!”” Genesis 15:2-3

But remember how they responded when God finally confirmed His gift of Issac to them?

“And He said, “I will certainly return to you according to the time of life, and behold, Sarah your wife shall have a son.”
(Sarah was listening in the tent door which was behind him.) Now Abraham and Sarah were old, well advanced in age; and Sarah had passed the age of childbearing. Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, “After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?”” Genesis 18:10-12

They didn’t believe Him, did they?

Then remember Zacharias? Remember how happy his wife, Elizabeth, was when she finally conceived John the Baptist?

“Now after those days his wife Elizabeth conceived; and she hid herself five months, saying, “Thus the Lord has dealt with me, in the days when He looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.”” Luke 1:24-25

So it is not a big stretch of the imagination to say that they must have been praying for a child for a long time. Yet, remember how Zacharias responded to the angel when he was told that his wife would be with child?

“And Zacharias said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years.”” Luke 1:18

And it wasn’t mere individuals who doubted the goodness of our Father’s blessings. Israel, as a nation, too experienced this doubt. Remember what they said at the Red Sea?

“Then they said to Moses, “Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you so dealt with us, to bring us up out of Egypt? Is this not the word that we told you in Egypt, saying, ‘Let us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die in the wilderness.”” Exodus 14:11-12

Seems like they actually enjoyed their time with the Egyptians, didn’t they? But did they?

“So the Egyptians made the children of Israel serve with rigor. And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage—in mortar, in brick, and in all manner of service in the field. All their service in which they made them serve was with rigor.” Exodus 1:13-14

In fact, this was why God sent Moses to deliver them.

“And the Lord said: “I have surely seen the oppression of My people who are in Egypt, and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters, for I know their sorrows. So I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and large land, to a land flowing with milk and honey,…” Exodus 3:7-8

And it was not as if they were being led out of slavery and into equally dire circumstances either.

“Now the children of Israel had done according to the word of Moses, and they had asked from the Egyptians articles of silver, articles of gold, and clothing. And the Lord had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they granted them what they requested. Thus they plundered the Egyptians.” Exodus 12:35-36

Yet, even though they got what they wanted, they were too blind to see it for what it really was.

You know, beloved child of God, we all have our preconceived notions of what prayers our loving Father will answer and what He won’t. We think we have Him all figured out and we know what criterion He bases His decisions on. But you know, no matter what we think, the truth is, His only criterion for deciding whether to answer our prayers or not, is this.

““For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”” Jeremiah 29:11 [NIV]

If it will prosper you, you will get it. And if you got it, it means that whatever you got is meant to prosper you. It’s that simple.

And if you are thinking that your request is too big, or too outrageous for Him to ever make it happen, then He is telling you, right now, the same words He told Sarah.

“Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life,…” Genesis 18:14

Nothing is too hard for Him. He’s just waiting for the appointed time, the best time, the most opportune time to bless you with it.

But if you have been praying and finally got what you wanted, yet doubts are starting to form in your head about whether what you got is good for you, fret no further. Our Father has deemed that the pony is good for you, and knows that it will prosper you. So simply allow your heart to be filled with peaceful gratitude and enjoy our Father’s blessing for what it is, a blessing.

So, our Father bless you with anything lately?

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