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Do I Inquire of the Lord Enough?

Have you ever noticed how often David “inquired of the Lord?” He seems to do this quite a bit. For example, “Therefore David inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I go and attack these Philistines?” And the Lord said to David, “Go and attack the Philistines, and save Keilah.”” (1 Samuel 23:2, NKJV). We find this questioning again when a famine was going on in the land. “Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years, year after year; and David inquired of the Lord. And the Lord answered…”” (2 Samuel 21:1, NKJV). As I sit here thinking about this, I’m wondering, do I inquire of the Lord enough?

I suppose we might be tempted to think his situation was very different from our own. When is the last time I was dealing with Philistines or famine? Not only that, but the Lord appears to have answered him almost immediately, and in a way I wouldn’t expect today. David had very specific questions and the Lord supplied very specific answers. So maybe we shouldn’t make too much of this “inquiring” after the Lord after all.

But wait a moment. Does it really matter how, when, and in what manner the Lord chooses to answer us? Are we right to assume that just because God is unlikely to answer us with an audible voice or prophetic word, that we are therefore disallowed from heavenly inquiries like this? Can’t I still ask the Lord anything I want? Shouldn’t we still bring him our questions? Can’t we still put our hard decisions before him? Shouldn’t I think, in the face of almost any difficulty, “Let me ask God about this”? Why don’t I do this more often?

I wonder how many poor decisions we have made because we simply failed to “inquire of the Lord.” What if we, almost naturally, inquired of the Lord about the matters of our lives? Have a big decision to make at school or work? Ask the Lord. Choosing to date someone or marry someone? Inquire of the Lord. Planning a big purchase? Talk to our Heavenly Father. Thinking about moving? Why not send that question heavenward? Experiencing some hard trial in your life and are unsure why? Inquire of the Lord.

Could it be that God might honor our asking…even if he doesn’t respond with an obvious answer right away? I think he would. And I think that I probably wrestle with difficulties and problems and challenges far longer than I should before deciding to bring them to God in prayer. David’s “inquiring of the Lord” was a token of his piety. What does my failure to “inquire of the Lord” say about me?

Maybe the honest truth is that I don’t necessarily want God’s advice. I wonder if, deep down, I know that the choice I’m about to make is more selfish than godly. Or maybe far too many of my choices are driven by worldly priorities rather than heavenly priorities. Could that be the reason I’m reluctant to inquire of the Lord? Maybe I don’t want to hear what I think he will probably say.

The bottom line is, I think, that we inquire of the Lord far too little today.

Charles Sturgeon seemed to think so too. He said in a sermon once “If God be our Father, we are His children, and if we do not consult Him, surely we are but sorry children. We lose a great blessing, and incur no small guilt, if, professing to be the sons and daughters of our Father who is in heaven, we never ask Him to direct our way.”

And so, my friend, how about you? What burden are you carrying, what question are you struggling with? Are you trying to figure it out on your own? Maybe there is a better way. Have you inquired of the Lord?

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