“Every day I call to you, my God, but you do not answer. Every night I lift my voice, but I find no relief.” Psalm 22:2 NLT
Have you ever found yourself in the same place as the Psalmist, feeling abandoned and hurt over prayers that have gone unanswered?
I firmly believe that God delights in answering our prayers and yet . . . when the answers are long in coming, and the situations more painful than I feel I can bear, I’ve been known to ask the big “WHY?” How do we cope when God remains silent in response to our cries? Click To Tweet
Today I’m delighted to share Part Three of an 8-part series on Perseverance that three great friends and I have collaborated on together. Friends that have been there to pray me through some of the hard stuff – Mary Geisen, Holly Barrett, and Debbie Kitterman.
Please join @MaryGeisen, @HollySBarrett, and @Dare2Hear and me for Part 4 in our series on #Unanswered Prayer Click To Tweet
Over the course of my life I’ve experienced numerous answers to prayer, some of them HUGE, and my faith has been deepened because of those answers. But there have also been times when I’ve come before God broken and begging for answers to the deep hurts of life – addictions, illnesses, death and other types of loss – and the answers haven’t been quick in coming.
As I’ve cried out to God I’ve often seen those around me rejoicing over His miraculous answers to their own prayers. Sometimes I’ve even been a part of praying for those whom God has answered. I truly rejoice for them . . . and yet . . .
“Have my own prayers become lost on their way to Your ears God? Do You care more for others than You do for me?” Of course the answer to that is NO! The rain falls on the just and the unjust (Matt. 5:45), and no one escapes life without experiencing pain. But that can be hard to see in the midst of trial.
Even as I write, there are heart breaking situations that I’m waiting on God to answer. As I pray and wait I remind myself that:
- God is Sovereign – Supreme, Absolute, Unlimited!
- God’s ways are higher and greater than my ways.
- God is eternal – past, present, and future – and He sees the whole picture when I can’t see.
- God knows the best answer in the right time. Sometimes a delay is in God’s plan . . . maybe even beyond our limited lifetimes.
- Delay makes me more dependent on God for the answer. When I can see no possible solution to a problem and I come to a place of utter surrender, my relationship with Him grows deeper. In truth, my times of deepest pain have also been my times of sweetest fellowship with Jesus.
- Sometimes prayers are being answered incrementally and we cannot see it. Especially in our prayers for others because who, but God, can see what’s happening in the hearts of the ones we pray for?
- My faith is not in the answer to the prayer (a saved marriage, a redeemed child, a job situation, a better way of life) it is in the ONE who holds the answers. My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus and His righteousness! Click To Tweet
For the one who feels overwhelmed with needs, needs that seem as if they will never be answered, I am right here with you. I understand. I don’t want to trivialize your pain with pat answers, because I don’t believe there really are any, but I do want to share with you some things I do while I myself pray and wait:
- Continue to be persistent in prayer. Matthew 7:7-8
- Pray in line with God’s will and the character of God. I John 5:14-15
- Pray to know God’s mind or to know how to pray. Romans 12:2
- Ask God to search our motives. Is my prayer for my own attainment and pride or will it give God glory? James 4:3, Psalm 139:23-24. Psalm 66:18
- Pray Scripture. The word of God is the mighty sword that Jesus used against the enemy when tempted in the wilderness. Matthew 4:1-11. Note: Sometimes delayed promises can be spiritual attacks, the enemy’s attempt to weaken and confuse us. In these times it is important to quote God’s word to the enemy and remind him to Whom you belong!
- Call in the troops – prayer warriors to come alongside and help support our weary praying arms when we can no longer hold them up ourselves. Exodus 17:12
- When the need goes on and on and on . . . and others forget your requests for prayer, because most will forget, remember that God will never leave you or forsake you Hebrews 13:5, and that His love for you never fails. Psalm 136:1
- Be still, listen, and receive God’s deep assurance while waiting. Psalm 46:10 NIV and Romans 15:4b NLT
- Thank God in all circumstances – because this is what He tells you to do. I Thess. 5:18
- Continue to BELIEVE God for answers. Proverbs 3:5-6
- Rest in the Lord. It is especially important for me, recovering perfectionist that I am, to remember that there is nothing I can do to earn answers from God. Psalm 37:7
Finally, if nothing else I’ve said resonates with you then hear this: As one who has lived many years and through many experiences (yep, I’m getting old), I’m here to tell ya’ that God has always proved Himself faithful to me. ALWAYS! Most of the time in ways far BETTER than anticipated!
If you’ve lost your hope and have difficulty believing this for yourself, please feel free to borrow on the HOPE that God has given me. If you wish to contact me with prayer needs I am more than willing to pray on your behalf. 😉
My life verse: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13 NIV
“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 NLT
Blessings dear friends,
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