And the Lord said to Samuel, “Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them. -1 Samuel 8:7

We know we have a patient and loving God. Look at His special chosen ones, the Israelites, and how they not only were disobedient, but even rejected Him! As a parent, there are few things on earth more heartbreaking than your own children’s rejection.

But God is also loving in His demonstration of consequences. After so much complaining and whining from His children, who wanted a king to rule over them like their neighbors (“all the other kids are doing it!”), God tasked Samuel with giving them a king. The Israelites would have to reap what they chose to sow.

Samuel first warned them that a human king would be very demanding, and even unjust or cruel, but they didn’t care. They wanted what they wanted, and Samuel gave them Saul, who did well…at least for the first twenty years.

Like the Israelites, we should carefully consider what we’re asking for.

I’ve learned to put my petitions to a litmus test before bringing them to God: Is what I’m asking for glorifying Him, or just serving me? Am I possibly rationalizing my way into thinking my way will also please Him?

If my petitions pass the test by glorifying Him and not serving my needs, and that I’m wanting to please Him through that for which I pray, then I bring them before Him.

If you’re asking for something that dethrones Jesus–the One True King–in your heart, and doesn’t make Him famous, you’re asking to be ruled by the world. You’re asking to be like the unbelievers around you.

But He has set you apart as one of His elect. Boldly bring Him your petitions that make Him known, and He will bless you in your obedience, faith, and surrender.