Daily Devotional: Day 216 | By Stephen Bilson-Ogoe
“And I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches and honor, so that there shall not be anyone like you among the kings all your days” (1 Kings 3:13, NKJV).
A lot of Christians pray, but the question is: How many pray well? Praying isn’t always about what you ask. It’s also about what you don’t ask. Praying is more than going through a prayer list. God is not like a grocery store, where people go with a shopping list and check the list as they shop. God wants you to think of Him as your Father. When we get caught up in the ‘prayer list’ mentality, we feel we must mention every point on our list or every desire on our heart to get our prayers answered.
What we need to realize is that God’s love for us is bigger than our prayers. He knows what we need before we ask (cf. Matthew 6:8). When we pray, God is not limited by what we ask or forget to ask. It is His nature to do more than we can ask or imagine (cf. Ephesians 3:20). When this truth settles in your heart, your prayer life will blossom and develop into quality moments of worship, fellowship and intercession.
Today’s opening Scripture is about what God did for the young king Solomon. Shortly after Solomon succeeded David as king, the Lord appeared to him in a dream and told him to ask whatever He wanted. The king could have gone through a long list of things he wanted. But, Solomon asked for one thing only: wisdom. After granting Solomon’s request, note what God says next, “And I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches and honor.” Solomon received blessings he did not ask. It is God’s nature to give, not only what you ask, but also what you have not asked. Therefore, do not limit Him in your heart.
Out of his deep love for God, David planned to build a house (temple) for Him. Although impressed, the Lord wouldn’t let David do it. Instead, God surprised David by giving him an everlasting dynasty (royal house) which is founded upon Jesus Christ, the Son of David (cf. Luke 1:30-33; Matthew 22:41-45; Mark 10:46-52). David didn’t ask for a dynasty, but God gave it anyway; and David was overwhelmed by God’s kindness (cf. 2 Samuel 7:18-29). Abraham wanted a son; God gave him more than a son. He made him the father of all believers, Jews and Gentiles alike (cf. Romans 4:9-12). Abraham did not ask for this blessing, but he received it.
Hannah wanted a child and even promised to dedicate him to God forever. God gave her more than a child. He gave her Samuel, easily one of the greatest judges and prophets in the history of God’s people. That was not all; God gave Hannah five more children: three sons and two daughters (cf. 1 Samuel 2:21).
What you need is the kingdom of God spiritually alive in your heart through faith, and to walk faithfully with your God. You will receive blessings you have not asked. As we conclude today’s message, think about the following words of Jesus: “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33).
God bless you. Amen.
For further study: Luke 5:1-11