You do not have because you do not ask

From where come wars and disputes among you? Is it not from here, from your lusts, which war in your members? You lust and you do not have. You murder and are jealous and you cannot obtain. You fight and make war. You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong ( lit. sick, malignant) motives, that you may spend it in gratifying your lusts. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world is constituted an enemy of God. James 4:1-4

* There is a struggle within ourselves. We always want something and strain to grasp it, whatever it is, and it’s a way of conflict, within ourselves and with others.  E.g. authority…

* James then says that ‘asking’ is the answer; the proper protocol of faith. Then, there’s a shift from a struggle within our self,  to relating to and depending on another, who happens to be God, and who has the authority to grant the request.

The life of faith is about coming to a place, over and over again, where we have to humble ourselves and ask God.  Also, this reveals to us how much of a sham and a show our flesh is : a vain proud show, that asking God would be humiliating. Why wouldn’t we ask God for help at every step of the way?  Instead of grasping, asking? Instead of self-help, grace? Instead of looking inwards, looking upwards? Instead of independence, dependence?

* This is tempered with the need to check our own heart, which is able to deceive us, as it is capable of wrong motives.

* Seeking one’s own things, and not the things which are Jesus Christ’s, is not a harmless exercise; it is considered by God to be the work of His enemies.

Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world is constituted an enemy of God.

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