If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him! Luke 11:13
This verse is at the end of a section that begins with the disciples saying, “Lord teach us to pray.” They didn’t say, “Teach us HOW to pray,” but rather “Teach us TO pray.” Do you get the difference? They had watched Jesus withdraw very early in the morning over and over to some lonely place. They knew He had been praying, but their thoughts probably were like ours: “What can He be praying about all of this time?”
To answer, Jesus told a story illustrating how, when we pray, we should be persistent and keep knocking until we get what it is that we need. He used the word “impudence” which is like cheekiness, or rash boldness–audacity. That’s what we need when we come to Jesus with our requests.
We should pray and not just fret or go without. And when we pray, we need boldness and persistence that makes us keep asking. That’s when Jesus said that good fathers would give a good gift, so how much more would He give His Holy Spirit to those who ask Him. Jesus announced that God is even better than a father of the year, so we are asking someone who loves us and wants good things for us. The best thing we can get when we pray is God Himself, in the form of the Holy Spirit.
We not only get the answer we are looking for, or the help that we need, we get the Holy Spirit’s assistance to be with us, to direct our steps and to give us the wisdom we need. In John 14 and 16, Jesus describes the Holy Spirit as our helper, the Spirit of truth, a teacher and a guide.
So, instead of just asking for peace, ask for the Holy Spirit to assist you in every way that He can. Ask Him to join you and to give you everything you need for the day–His enabling power and wisdom, peace and confidence. We need the Spirit’s work in order to effectively live out the Christian life. Without Him, we’re trying to make it on our own.
C.S. Lewis said that “We are half hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
Put into the context of Luke 11, that means to ask for all of God via His Holy Spirit. Don’t stop short of getting all of Him. Go for the holiday at the sea!