When you want to get somebody to respond positively to your request or appeal, how do you communicate with them? By demanding they agree with you "or else"? Or by saying something vague, only once, and hoping they respond?
There are two amazing examples of people in the Bible appealing or requesting something from someone else that I want to remind you of today, in hope that we may be more like them when we are asking for something of someone else.
- Esther. When Esther knew she needed to ask the King to do something, she is famous for showing courage and bravery to speak up. However, most people forget that prior to speaking up she spent time in prayer and fasting. And she asked her friends and family to be prayer partners with her. How often do you pray and fast before a big request of somebody else? How often do you get prayer partners on board with you BEFORE an event, instead of after?
- Paul. In the book of Philemon, Paul writes a letter to a slave-owner and basically asks that when his runaway slave returns to him that he treat him with kindness, care, and respect (when in fact the man could have actually jailed or killed him instead). Paul starts by being very kind and humble, then states his request, then reminds the recipient of how important Paul has been to him and that he sort of "owes me one". How often do you focus on kindness and humility when requesting something of somebody else?
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