Monday, April 22, 2013

Asking for the Double Portion

And it came to pass, when they were gone over, that Elijah said unto Elisha, Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee. And Elisha said, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.  –II Kings 2:9 (KJV)

Recently I met a few friends for lunch at a restaurant that serves breakfast all day.  Along with my meal I ordered a side of fried apples, which are among my favorites from this particular place.  The server brought our food and asked if everything was all right.  When I hesitated, she asked if there was something wrong.  I jokingly said my serving of fried apples looked smaller than it used to be, which was understandable with the increase in food prices.  I then told her not to worry about it.  A few minutes later, she re-appeared with another order of fried apples – on the house.  I tried to refuse them, but she insisted.  “Praise the Lord,” I thought.  “I have received the double portion.”

The Bible describes in II Kings 9 how Elijah the prophet was preparing himself for the end of his ministry when his protégé, the prophet Elisha, asked a favor.  The younger prophet requested that once the elder prophet was gone he receive a double portion of God’s Spirit.  Elijah said in verse 10 that this was a difficult request, yet if the younger prophet witnessed him being taken by God to heaven then it would be done.  What impresses me about this passage in the Bible was Elisha’s boldness in asking for double of God’s Spirit.  He could have received half the prophet’s spiritual power and this would have been sufficient.  Yet, he asked for more.

Perhaps we do well to consider our attitude when asking the Lord for spiritual wisdom and guidance.  So often we settle for a touch of God’s spirit when the Lord is willing to give us much more.  Many believers wander about in their own meager strength when the blessed power of God is available through faith.  However, faith which brings the double portion of God’s power is faith not contented with just going through the motions.  Instead, this is bold, vibrant, and dynamic faith which comes about through daily taking up the cross of Christ and submitting to God’s will.  I confess there have been times I have wandered through my day worried, fearful, and in near agony over the difficulties I was facing.  All the while God was standing ready to provide a double portion of His strength and spiritual power.  Yet, I failed to ask. 

Christ calls us to walk forward in faith, not fear.  The high call of God in Jesus Christ is one of victory, not defeat.  We may have lost battles along the way, but in Christ we win the war.  Personally, I have had enough of half-hearted prayers and milksop faith.  No longer will I skim the surface of my relationship with the Lord.  Let us take to heart what the Bible says in Hebrews 4:16 where God challenges us to “come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”

Are you struggling in your walk with Christ?  Ask God for a double portion of His power.  Ask boldly, in faith, and do not be afraid.

God bless you today.