Let’s jump right into it. If we’re honest with ourselves we don’t like to beg. Begging is a lowly action that’s seen as somewhat scornful and disgraceful. When we think about a beggar we immediately imagine the man or woman near intersections or in front of convenience stores. We picture dirty, ragged, and awful smelling. At the site of a beggar we flea. We avoid them at all costs and we teach our children to never become one of “them.” The issue with this is that we’ve taken the idea of begging to the extreme that we would much rather suffer in silence than beg the Lord in desperation for help, for an answer, for a miracle, or for something as simple yet powerful as, hope.
Culture Christianity has promoted the idea of the Instagram, picture-perfect life. We share the highlights of our life with pearly white teeth rocking the latest trends while behind smiles we are internally crippled at the reality lived with unanswered prayers, desperate cries for help, and recurring heartache. How unfortunate that we’ve become okay with this. How sad we’ve deemed this lifestyle of pretense, “Christian Living.” Don’t get me wrong, I by no means am promoting airing your dirty laundry for the whole world to see, however when we rely on personal strength, knowledge, and gusto, we remove Jesus from the equation. The issue with this is that we unknowingly walk in pride that keeps us from falling on our knees before the savior we claim to serve. We forget that the deliverance we desire cannot and will not come from personal strength but rather from full dependency on Jesus. That’s the great exchange that occurred during salvation. With salvation comes the exchange of independence for dependency on your Creator. The sooner we humble ourselves and come to this realization that we must beg and place dependency on Jesus, then can we experience the fullness of God.
I struggle with this. I like the idea of appearing like I have my life figured out. I don’t want people to worry about me or about my problems. Marriage has taught me that I can lean on my husband and he can lean on me when one of us is struggling. Marriage should be an example of our relationship with Christ. Not that Christ ever depends on us, however, it’s the idea that whenever you are in relation with Jesus you trade your independence with trusting a Known God in the midst of an unknown future. I’ve experienced this many times during my almost two years of marriage. There have been days I am thoroughly discouraged or feeling completely hopeless and my husband reminds me I am not alone. He embraces me not with judgment, but rather with compassion and mercy. He reminds me of the God we serve and nudges me to have an attitude of desperation. To beg God in times of need and whenever life’s going smoothly. This begging is messy tears. This begging is not really for an immediate answer (while an immediate miracle sure sounds great sometimes). Rather this begging is ridding all pride and becoming the least of these. It’s saying “God, I need you and I depend on you and you alone.” It’s easy to walk through each day in the pretense confidence of personal strength, however, whenever we get in the posture of a beggar, that’s when the dirt comes out. That’s when the ragged parts of our lives are revealed. That’s when the awful-smelling parts of our hearts are aired. The awesome part about this beggar posture is that God someone in his mercy restores peace, joy, and a sweet-smelling heart.
Mark chapter 5 illustrates begging from three completely different views. One from demons, another from an influential leader, and another from a woman rejected by society and her entire family due to an unclean nature of illness over 12 years. This chapter illustrates the powerful posture of the beggar they all have in common. The demons knew the authority of Jesus that they begged. A man who was by society’s standards influential and well-known put aside his societal stature and begged. A woman who was dejected and rejected, scorned and shunned for over 12 years did not lose hope, but begged. This shows that you and I are not too big or too small, neither too great nor too lowly to fall on our faces and posture ourselves before the Lord for help. Will the miracle be immediate? There’s no guarantee, however, I promise you will receive from the Lord what He desires in that time. Don’t be too proud to beg.