“Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.” Mark 11:24
What if we don’t receive what we ask? I’ve known people who prayed in faith for a healing, a marriage or a changed life and it didn’t happen. Spurgeon wrote: “We need a realizing assurance in prayer… To be sure they are coming! To act as if we had got them…When you have taken the case of your sick child before God to believe that the child will recover, or if it should not, that it will be a greater blessing to you and more glory to God, and so leave it to him.”
When I disagree with God’s answer, I’m saying I know more than God and put myself above Him. He’s All-knowing. He knit me together in my mother’s womb. He knew me before the foundation of the earth. Who am I to judge His answers? If I trust Him, I will trust His answers.
What am I asking for? I pray for our son to walk with God, make wise choices and avoid what would destroy him. What is the bottom line? I want him to be right with God and be with Him in eternity. Do I know what that journey will look like? No. I pray for my friend who has MS to have healing and restoration. What am I asking? Bring her peace, joy and fulfillment. Does healing guarantee that? No. Only God knows what will bring optimum joy.
I pray for another’s marriage and difficult circumstances. I want her to be happy, joyful, cherished, and equipped to face her days. Would solving her problems promise satisfaction? Only God knows. I ask God to use me to bring others to Himand help me to be humble and kind, for freedom from envy and pride. Can I judge what God needs to do in my life to accomplish this? No.
What is my part?
Faith. I ask and believe it is done. I don’t have to know the date it will be answered. If I ask in faith, He has answered.
In his book, The Still Hour, Austin Phelps wrote about prayer, “It is, and God has decreed that it should be, a power in the universe, as distinct, as real, as natural, and as uniform, as the power of gravitation, or of light, or of electricity.”
When I pray, do I know He has answered or am I thinking perhaps He will answer? Do I trust what I know about God? He is Almighty God, All-knowing, All-powerful. He always was and always will be. I can’t judge God’s answers. I can only TRUST in His Sovereign wisdom, grace, justice and love.
Did God always say yes to Jesus? In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus prayed, “Take this cup from me.” And God said no. Jesus also prayed, “Not what I will, but what you will.” Yet He asked the Father to remove the cup of suffering. He asked and God said no.
When God says no, I often decide something is wrong with me or think God doesn’t care. Jesus was His perfect Son with perfect faith. God’s purposes were much higher than the request Jesus made. Jesus trusted God’s perfect plan.
Do I realize God’s purposes and plans give me what is excellent? I have such limited knowledge and vision. I don’t know what is best in view of eternity. Only God knows. The hard truth is God’s ultimate plan sometimes involves suffering in this brief life. Do I trust Him? Do you?
I first published this at the following website for Takin it To The Streets: