Malachi 4:1-6 4 “Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and that day that is coming will set them on fire,” says the Lord Almighty. “Not a root or a branch will be left to them. 2 But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall. 3 Then you will trample down the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I do these things,” says the Lord Almighty.
4 “Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel.
5 “See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes. 6 He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.”
He’s making a list – checking it twice! Gonna find out who’s naughty and nice. Santa Claus is coming to town! And he’s going to bring presents. And he’s going to give presents to people who deserve it!
But you know what? Jesus is even better than that. He promises to give us everything we ask for! “And I will do whatever you ask in my name.” (John 14:13)
But there’s a problem here. How many people do you know get everything ask for? How many of you have everything you want? What’s on your list this Christmas season? Maybe some DVD’s or Blurays? Season tickets? A family meal with the whole family and no fights? How likely are you to actually get the whole list? You’re more likely to get a lame gift than what you’re actually after.
So, how does that work? God promises to give us everything we ask… but he doesn’t actually give it? What gives?
In fact, how many times does God give the opposite of what we ask? How many of you have prayed to have enough to pay the bills? How many of you still have money problems? How many of us want a good, happy family but end up in arguments and fights and broken homes? God tells us to ask him for anything and he’ll give it… but that’s not what happens! (more…)