I once had a friend tell me “I pray to God, I go to church, I try to live a good life and it seems none of my prayers ever get answered.” I lovingly explained that sometimes either Gods’ answer is no or sometimes he is waiting for us to align ourselves in his will before He can or will act on our words. I know she is not alone in her way of thinking. There are many churches, homes, and streets, filled with that kind of mentality. The one scripture that comes to mind to sum up my thoughts when it comes to answered or unanswered prayer is found in Matthew 6:33 “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you.” That is as plain and simple as it is going to get my friends.
The Christian prayer life is more than the whole praying to God thing, it is a “having a day to day relationship” thing…it is more than a going to church thing, it is a “being the church” thing, and it is more than a “trying to be good” thing, it is a “knowing you can’t be good and having to depend on God for everything” thing. And if you still don’t get it…it is a “seek first God and God alone and His will, His righteouness” thing and what you ask in prayer will align up with Him and there He will answer what you are asking.
Let me explain a bit deeper. When I graduated high school I had a calling to intern at a ministry in Texas, half way across the country, and according to my parents, thanks to the whole David Koresh incident, they assumed it was a cult. My parents believed in God and knew who Jesus was but the whole Christian walking the walk and talking the talk was a little extreme for them and of course I was a teenager, I knew everything! So, no doubt we clashed on many issues regarding christianity. Regardless, I knew God was calling me to this ministry and I was to go and I was going to go regardless of what they said. Then, that still small voice spoke to me and said “You are not to go without the blessing from your mother.” I wrestled with those words because I thought to myself there was no way she was going to give me her blessing. Nonetheless, I began to pray for my mother’s blessing upon my internship. Days, weeks, and months went by as I continued to plan my trip. I continued to pray and trust God that she would give me her blessing, but had no clue as to how! Three days prior to my departure I came home to a card on my pillow. In this card she gives me advice, speaks of her dreams for me and then the last sentence she states “I love you very much and give you my blessing!” We had never spoken of the need for me to have her blessing before I left, so when I read those words tears just streamed down my face knowing God used her to fulfill His will in my life and answered my prayer of giving me her blessing for my trip just in the knick of time!
If you are going through a time of waiting for Him to answer a prayer you have been praying I really want to encourage you to keep praying, holding steadfast to the promises he has given us in Ephesians 3:20 “Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us…” and in John 15:7 “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given to you.” He has over and over been so faithful in many of the prayers I have lifted up, but there are those that have been answered differently or not answered to my understanding. If He has answered a prayer like this for you I also want to encourage you to completely put your trust in His provision for your life and don’t look back on the “what if” or the “why not” of the prayer….the enemy loves a faith like that where he can come in and distort your perspective of God’s love for you and the situation. In all my life I have never not been able to say “God works for the good of those who love the Lord and who have been called according to His purpose!” Trust this, believe this, live this and watch the power of God manifest within your prayer life like you have never seen him before 🙂