I have been doing a lot of thinking recently on the subject of faith. After hearing a great sermon by Rob Bell on the matter, I have come to the conclusion that we have ultimately defiled the manner in which Jesus Himself went about sharing the deepest extents of faith with others. We have made faith into a contest of sorts. We have allowed the creativity of our faith to be replaced with traditional dogma, which has made sharing our faith, more of an obligation rather than a joy. It is not all too surprising that our want of understanding faith (from a modern, mechanical aspect) has never truly amounted to much. I have learned to tear down many of the paradigms I have previously learned about sharing my faith with others for a new way of understanding, responding and sharing my faith. And, thus far, it seems to be a lot more inviting and positive.
In Matthew 7:7, Jesus likens faith to direct, intentional actions (ask, seek, knock). There is a hint of desperation that accompanies these actions. We long for someone on the other side of the door to open up and welcome us inside. Many times though, it seems as though perhaps no one is hope despite all the signs they actually are. Why knock? I guess the question we should really be asking is, “Why not knock?” What do we have to lose by continually knocking on the door? There is so much more to gain in our knocking. The Scriptures tell us that the door will be open and yet we are impatient to that end. We are to continue knocking though. Even when our hand hurts from the repetition of our efforts we must continue to do so. It is when we lest expect the door to open, it does, and the joy we have been looking for stands before us. It is a beautiful picture of faith that we oftentimes are not taught in our local churches.
When a little kid continually says, “Dad, dad, daddy, dad, dad, dad, dad” (and so on), eventually the father must look towards his son and respond. I am sure I am not the only one that has had a young child continually pull on the corner of my shirt until I look down at them and give them the attention they are looking for. This Scripture invites us to do the same.
It is not that God is busy or does not want to give us His attention. He is not the kind of father that does not care about His children or ignores them. He waits until the time is right. His timing is perfect for us, when we need it. We are invited though to be that “annoying” child with God. We just continually knock, knowing that the door will be opened. Without that faith, we will surly become bored and perhaps even walk away from the door. If only we would have knocked a little longer.
When was the last time someone shared their faith in such a way, you were given this analogy of asking, seeking, knocking? When someone you know well asks you, “What’s the big deal about faith? What is it?” What was your response? Was your response something like, “Faith is sort of like knocking. You stand before a door and you knock until the person who lives behind the door opens it. No one knows how long you have to sit there and knock but it is in the knocking, I become more fully aware that the door will soon open.” What a beautiful picture of faith. It is real, genuine, and descriptive. It is not some mushy, fluffy, pithy, cliché. No one really has time for those examples anyway.
So it is that my encouragement rests in this: Ask, Seek, and Knock. Never stop. Allow your faith to grow from the inside out and know the truth: The door will open, you will receive, and you will find. That is something worth sharing with others.