So, I am still trying to get moved. And working on my level of patience. Out of all of our moves, this has been perhaps the most difficult for me because we went into it thinking things would happen quickly. And it did — for my husband. But the kids and I are waiting. Prayerfully, we are now just a couple of weeks from joining him, so to allow me time to focus on the move, one of my non-fiction writing friends agreed to cover today’s blog post. Thank you, Sherry Gareis!
And sometimes, no matter how earnestly you lay your petitions at God’s feet, they remain unanswered.
What’s up with this?
The Bible tells us that God hears all our prayers, “The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them…” (Psalm 34:17)
It also says that he’ll provide for ALL our needs, “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 4:19)
So if he hears all our prayers and he says he’ll meet all our needs, how is it possible that sometimes we don’t receive the answer we want, or any answer at all for that matter?
Maybe, just maybe, that isn’t exactly the case…
Let me ask you a question? Did you have the breath it required to speak your prayer? Nope, I’m not being a smart aleck – I’m being completely serious. Often when I pray, I thank God for the air I breathe each and every second. I never asked him for it, but much to my benefit, he has blessed me with life and breath. Have you ever stopped to consider all the answered prayers, AKA ‘blessings’, which were never even requested to begin with?
• The danger you narrowly averted
• Your uninterrupted night’s sleep
• The not-so-chance meeting with someone God placed squarely in your path
God does provide. With every breath we take and every beat of our heart, he does listen and he does provide.
But back to the requests…
Consider all the prayers he has answered with love, care and generosity. How many significant prayers get answered each and every day that we may fail to acknowledge? I contend there are many answers woven throughout the course of our busy lives which we simply miss.
Let’s say, however, that you’re looking for the answer to a specific prayer and it’s just nowhere to be found.
• Perhaps you aren’t asking the right question. What if your prayer should be for the job which is the ‘best fit’, not the exact position at the company which you think is the best.
• Maybe your timing is off? God may want to grant your request, but he may have a different idea as to when.
• What if your desire completely counters someone else’s petition? Do they cancel each other out? Often two people may be praying for the exact same thing, and perhaps it’s only possible to fulfill one ‘yes’. Might God have to choose between them?
Trusting in the Lord means having faith that HIS answer, whether it’s the one you want or not, is the right one for all the right reasons.
I’ve often said with kids (and adults too!), they may appear to be the best kid in the world when everything is going their way, but how they handle the ‘no’s in life’ is what shows their true character.
How do you handle blessings that aren’t answered just as you’d like? Have you considered that God IS blessing you but it may look different than what you’ve asked for? God’s perspective is far broader and deeper than anything we can comprehend and what seems like a ‘no’ to us is often either a ‘not yet’ or a ‘I’ve got a better plan in mind for you, child.’
We are all blessed ‘Real Time’. Every second of every day is filled with the miracle of life and love, of hopes and dreams, of promises and protection. God DOES hear us and DOES keep his word, always. Our job is to trust.
Thanks, Sherry! Yes, our job is to trust even when the answer is not what (or when) we were expecting. How hard that can be to remember! I’m reminding myself of that a lot right now!
For those of you trying to win a FREE copy of one of the Crossing books, here’s your final question: In Romancing Melody, the angel Matthew appears to David and tells him to read what book of the Bible? Winners will be announced Tuesday, July 2nd!