Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
Yesterday afternoon, the boy wanted a “popcircle” (Popsicle). We’ve been working on getting him to say “please” and “thank you” when asking for something, so when he came up and said “I wanna popcircle”, we said “say please”. Now, you or I would simply turn around and without really thinking about it say “I want a popsicle, please” and we’d get one. Not the boy, no way, no how was he going to say please. “I don’t wanna say please!”, “I wanna popcircle!”, accompanied by screaming, collapsing on the floor and just generally throwing a fit. And every time he’d scream “I wanna popcircle!”, we’d calmly tell him, “say please”, at which point a fresh round of screaming and flailing would ensue. This went on for a couple of hours (being a horrible father, I took video of him for a couple of minutes) and he never did say please. He also never got his “popcircle”.
The point of this is, I wonder if sometimes God doesn’t feel like Kara and I did. He wants to give us good gifts and to bless us, but we just won’t ask in the right way. We refuse to say please (figuratively) and scream and throw ourselves on the floor when He doesn’t do things our way, right away. Maybe if we took to heart James 4:3 and stopped asking for things with the wrong motives, God would be willing to cheerfully grant our requests. So, the next time you’re asking God for something, examine your heart and determine why you’re really asking. And always say please.