Unanswered Prayers

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I remember a certain country music song from my youth called “Unanswered Prayers” (yes, among other genres, I listened to country music). The gist of the song was that sometimes God doesn’t answer our prayers because we’re asking for the wrong things, things we might live to regret later. In essence, the message behind the music was to trust that when God isn’t answering our prayers, it’s because He cares (not the opposite), and because He has something better in mind for us.

I wish it were always so simple. Don’t get me wrong – I absolutely believe God cares (even when He doesn’t answer our prayers) and that He is always working things out for our good, aiming to bring us His best. What I don’t believe, and therefore can’t agree with, is the reason many believe is behind God not answering our prayers.

As the song suggests, I think most people figure one of two things when it comes to unanswered prayers: either God really doesn’t much care about the situation we’re praying about, or we’re just not asking for the right things. So we tend to settle for a relationship with God and a prayer life that are weak and mystical, at best. What I mean by mystical is that our prayers and our relationship with God often fall into the category of spiritual things that are not clearly understood – even by us.

This troubles me, because the Bible and my experience of God have led me to a very different reality of prayer and relationship with God. While I freely admit that I once practiced a mystical life of prayer and spirituality, time and truth have ushered me into a place where prayer and spirituality are now the very natural fruit of relationship with God. And, strangely enough, this actually demystifies the life of faith and the discipline of prayer.

When Jesus taught us to pray in the Scriptures, He taught us to keep it simple. He taught us that anyone who believes in Him can pray. He taught us to begin by addressing God as “Our Father.” He taught us to ask for our daily needs to be provided – physically, spiritually, and emotionally. He did not teach that there would be some magical code or secret language, to watch for signs or symbols, or to pray lengthy, complicated, hyper-spiritual prayers with supposedly enlightened understanding. And He did not teach us to pray without the faith that assumes God will answer. Quite the opposite, He taught us to pray, believing God would absolutely answer.

Jesus taught plain people to pray plain prayers with childlike faith, believing God would hear and answer, because of the relationship from within which we pray: as children asking their good Father.

The Scriptures also teach that our prayers, when prayed from the place of simple, trusting relationship, will be powerful and effective. They teach that, when we pray, God hears and He answers. This is why I have trouble accepting unanswered prayers.

It can be true that we are asking amiss, that we are asking for things we want instead of things God wants. The Bible is clear that God answers the prayers that agree with His will for our lives. This is a good starting point: that we should know His will. That comes through reading and studying His Word, and it comes through growing in relationship with Him. He has not made His will difficult for the hungry heart to know and understand.

Once we begin to know and understand and pray His will, however, why is it that we still encounter unanswered prayers? Why, if we are praying the Word and will of God in our lives, do we not see Heaven move as God has said it will?

Here is where I have been recently awakened, and where I believe God wants to awaken a generation of women! Much of the reason we don’t see answers to the prayers we pray has to do with the position we are praying from. It has to do with the identity we enter into His presence wearing.

Dear Woman of Breakthrough, how many times have you come before God the Father as a broken, needy, hungry, helpless child? That is childlike faith, which is beautiful in the sight of God. And that will ensure that your basic needs are met. He is faithful to provide for those who seek Him for such.

However, we are not helpless children forever. There comes a time in our spiritual lives, just as in our physical lives, for maturity. We must grow from helpless child to Beloved Bride and Co-heir of the Kingdom of God, co-reigning with Christ.

We will undoubtedly always possess a simple and childlike faith and dependence upon God. The accomplishment of everything we seek must rest in the power of His grace and the good purposes of His heart. But in order to truly begin to grow in prayer and relationship with God, we must realize what it means to come before the King as Esthers, as Queens who have won the heart of their King, and therefore been entrusted with authority to decree and declare things into being.

This, of course, necessitates that our hearts and therefore our desires will be one with God’s, and that our requests then will be in alignment with His perfect will. Then our requests will be trustworthy, and unanswered prayers will become a thing of the past.

I lovingly challenge you today to examine your position before God in prayer, dear Woman of Breakthrough. It is time for the next level! It is time to step into His presence and learn to wait until you have His gaze and attention before you pray.

It is the hour of power in the Kingdom, meaning that God is looking for those who will carry His heart, and walk in their identity as His Bride. If that is an unfamiliar idea to you, I urge you to read the book of Esther in the Bible, and to familiarize yourself with the imagery of the church as the Bride of Christ who will arise in the last days to usher in the glory of God in the earth.

This is our time! God is raising the expectations of our prayers. No longer are they to be weak and beggarly and centered around our own self-concerns. God wants to give us prayers and petitions for our families, our communities, and our world. He wants to share the secrets and dreams of His heart with us, so we can pray them into reality!

It is time to arise and step into our identities, Women of Breakthrough. It’s time to pray from a new position, and it’s time to start seeing answers to our prayers!

{Photo images courtesy of http://www.pixabay.com}

 

 


One thought on “Unanswered Prayers

  1. Another way to maybe think about things is that maybe God answers prayers but sometimes answers them in a way we don’t necessarily want!!! I think that when we don’t get what we want after praying to Him, we say that He didn’t answer our prayers. The reality is that maybe He answered them differently from what we wanted or expected.

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