While, as believers in Jesus Christ, we all have known marvelous periods of grace, deliverance, and unspeakable joy – most of us probably have also known moments (perhaps very long periods) of utter discouragement, grief, and unspeakable pain. In times such as these, we can sometimes feel as though God is not answering our prayers. In fact, He may not be granting the precise thing for which we are asking.
Join us, then, as we consider this experience in the light of God’s perfect and reliable Word. What do we do, how should we think, when God doesn’t answer our prayers?
1) Know that God is wiser and more loving than you are.
Point to ponder: If you’ve been a Christian long, you’ve already experienced God’s ability to exceed your greatest plans or prayers.
Question to consider: If you are doubting God’s love or wisdom in the present, what proofs has He given you in the past (e.g. the cross)?
2) Prayerfully, humbly review your motives.
Point to ponder: God is completely satisfied with what God is doing in your life right now.
Question to consider: Is it for your pleasure or God’s that you are making your request?
3) Hold on God’s way, because He will certainly hold on His way.
Point to ponder: We must determine to obey God regardless of whether He changes our situation or not.
Question to consider: What lessons might you learn from Job in this regard?
4) Keep on asking, keep on knocking.
Point to ponder: Jesus knows our frailty: that is why He repeatedly encourages us to continue praying.
Question to consider: Has God providentially closed a door in your life? If so, trust Him; if not, keep knocking.
5) Rest in Jesus.
Point to ponder: Jesus’ words to an anxious, grieving father apply to our anxieties also, “Do not fear, only believe.”
Question to consider: Is there any area(s) in your life right now where you are fearing rather than trusting Jesus?