When Unanswered Prayer Is An Answer To Prayer
Posted by Job on October 2, 2008
From Fancied Freedom
A funny thing happened to me tonight…as I was cleaning the kitchen I began to pray about a situation. I came down with some kind of flu-bug or maybe just a bad cold, and will be unable to cover a meeting Monday night for my writing job like I usually do (but I’m obviously not sick enough to forgo blogging!). So, my editor said she’d try to find someone to fill in for me. Well, I prayed that this guy would be available, and after cleaning, I went to the computer, checked my e-mail and my editor replied with a message saying he can cover for me! Praise God!
That was definitely a fast answer to prayer. And there have been several others like that happen to me. But there have also been plenty of times when the answer or response from God is nowhere to be seen. I’ve even wondered if He heard me or if I forgot to say,”In Jesus’ Name,” at the end of the prayer.
After reading a devotional on prayer by Amy Carmichael several years ago, I realized that oftentimes God’s silence to our prayers is not always an unanswer (is that word? If not, I’m still using it.) Oftentimes His answer could be, “No,” “Not now,” or “Wait.” But aren’t these still answers? Scripture shows us numerous times where God has prolonged responding to His people’s prayers (Job, anyone?) for numerous reasons.
A specific time in my life when God left me wondering about my future only helped increase my faith and understanding in God’s awesome plan. He knows best, truly He does. But even during those times of uncertainty, when I’m wondering when or if the prayer will ever be answered, I am quickly reminded of one of the most encouraging stories in the Bible about prayer. It’s a parable Jesus told about a persistent widow and is way too good to not include in its entirety:
Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart, saying, “In a certain city there was a judge who did not fear God and did not respect man. “There was a widow in that city, and she kept coming to him, saying, ‘Give me legal protection from my opponent.’ “For a while he was unwilling; but afterward he said to himself, ‘Even though I do not fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will give her legal protection, otherwise by continually coming she will wear me out.’”And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge said; now, will not God bring about justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them? “I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:1-8