I grew up watching the original Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I still get the golden ticket song stuck in my head:
I’ve got a golden ticket
I’ve got a golden chance to make my way
And with a golden ticket, it’s a golden day
Charlie dances around singing a song and his bedridden grandfather miraculously hops out of bed to join him.
Jesus gave us a golden ticket.
The truth is, you can go directly to the Father and ask him, and he will grant your request because you use my name.
John 16:23b (NLT)
Jesus wouldn’t have told us that we can go directly to God if it were a difficult thing. His name is our golden ticket to access the Father.
On my last mission trip, there were several older people on our team. Apparently grey hair gets you the golden ticket—literally, they got a yellow slip of paper—that allowed them an easier time through the security line. They got to leave their shoes on and only had to go through the metal detector, not the full body scan. They had the closest thing to a free pass the airport could give them. And they (and their aching knees) were happy about it.
You haven’t done this before. Ask using my name, and you will receive, and you will have abundant joy.
John 16:24 (NLT)
Comparing our prayer life to an airport security line may seem trivial, but it can help to see the simplicity of Jesus’ words. Christianity is not complicated. Access to God is not difficult. Jesus gave us the use of his name as our golden ticket to God, all we have to do is use it—without hesitation. Those people in the security line with their yellow card didn’t hesitate to reap the benefits of what they’d been given and neither should we.
So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it.
Hebrews 4:16 (NLT)
Daily Bible reading: 2 Chronicles 23-25, John 16:16-33