We are commanded in Scripture to pray. God’s word assures us that He hears prayer. Truth be told, we don’t always get what we want and what we pray for. It is natural to feel unheard and disappointed when we think of the things we prayed for, and wished for but never came. This is what many people call unanswered prayer. But all those prayers were really answered, only not how we wanted.
We are often worn out by groaning about everything from daily frustrations at work to never-ending health problems to relational strains, and the list goes on. You pray and wait and hope that God will do it. You wait and wait, the hope starts to dry and time elapses and whatever you prayed comes not to pass. Do you know this kind of feeling?
GOD HEARS PRAYERS
I do not believe in anything called an unanswered prayer. I believe that God hears our prayers and answers them. Our God does not sleep nor slumber. His eyes are upon all who are His. God also tells us that when we pray, hears. Above all, God cares about you as His child.
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because He cares for you.1 Peter 5.6-7
But then, what happens because sometimes we pray and even fast but then nothing seems to change? Well, maybe the answer that God gives to some of our prayers we do not like it. God can answer our prayers in three ways; yes, no or wait. Many times when God says no or wait or answers not how we hoped, we tend to think that our prayers were unattended and unheard and we are tempted to give up praying altogether because we think is of no benefit.
Most of what we consider to be unanswered prayers are prayers that have been answered already. The issue is that we do not like the answer. Prayers offered for lustful thoughts will obviously get a no from God. James says, we pray and do not have because we pray to spend it in lust. God will not give his children that which will harm them. As a good father, he will deny them those things which will drive them into sin.
You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.James 4:3
Prayer Answered but not exactly the way I wanted
Because of our weaknesses, we do not pray right. Holy Spirit intercedes for us before God because He searches and knows exactly what we want.
Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession [g]for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.Romans 8:26-27 NKJV
God answers our prayers not in the way we requested. We are weak and sometimes we do not even pray right. The prayer item may be genuine, but God answers the ‘heart’ of our prayer. Holy Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. Though the gist of our prayers could be genuine but getting the exact specifications of our prayers could be dangerous. Holy Spirit intercedes for us and purifies our requests. If we are not wise, we will consider this to be an unanswered prayer.
As believers, we must understand when God answered our prayers according to His wisdom. Do not be discouraged because the answer is not what you hoped. Be thankful that He answers them for the greater good.
Prayer Answered According To His Will
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.1 John 5:14-15
We must also learn to persist in prayers and pray according to the will of God. Jesus is not a magic formula to get what we want from God. God is Sovereign and His counsel will stand. It is good to pray to God and make our requests known to Him who is All-Wise, All-Powerful, All-Loving God. In His Word, He has assured us that He works all things for the good of His people. With this in mind, let us always remember that our God knows the best, and what He ordains Is best.
Sometimes our requests are just wanted, something which is not very essential (but we may think it is). God sees what we really need and he meets them because he cares. Sometimes it may be a prayer about needs and assure you that even if he does not do it your way, at last, you will praise Him for His goodness.
When Time Is Right, He will Bring It to Pass
When the time is right, I, the Lord, will make it happen.Isaiah 60:22.
The reason we think God did not answer our prayers is that he does not answer them in the way we like or in our own timing. We tend to recognize that God answered our prayers when He says yes in our own timing. At other times, we wait for God’s time because as the famous saying goes, “God’s time is the best.”
Sometimes we grow weary of waiting, wondering if God turned a deaf ear to our prayers. You sometimes start losing interest to pray. You are anxious and do not know anything. If you have been in this situation, you are not alone. I pray that the Good Lord may grant us patience to wait for Him.
In conclusion, in whatever circumstance you might be in, rest assured that God loves you and cares about you. In all his dealings with you, you will receive what is good for you. If you saw the repercussions that would follow if you had all your desires granted, you would weep indeed. Be thankful and praise Him.