Have your ever been disappointed before by unanswered prayers? Maybe you feel like God has forgotten you for taking a long time to answer a few of your most important prayers. Well, I have, not once, but more than one time. So should we stop praying because we feel our answers have been delayed? Certainly not. I have some prayers that I have been praying to this day that I am still waiting for God to answer me in His own timing.
In the Bible in the Book of Acts chapter 16 verse 25 to 26, it records that, “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose.”
One thing I know, God answers prayers. But sometimes God may surprise us with the answers, not the way we expected. I have learned about this from the same examples of Apostle Paul. God may answer some prayers, and some prayers He may astonish you with the answers. Apostle Paul had some kind of affliction and he prayed to God for deliverance, three times, for God to deliver him. And guess what the answer was?
In the book of 2 Corinthians chapter 12 verse 9 verses 1 to 9, Apostle Paul said, “I must go on boasting. Although there is nothing to be gained, I will go on to visions and revelations from the Lord. I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows— was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell. I will boast about a man like that, but I will not boast about myself, except about my weaknesses. Even if I should choose to boast, I would not be a fool, because I would be speaking the truth. But I refrain, so no one will think more of me than is warranted by what I do or say, or because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.”
Sometimes God will not remove our weaknesses, or allow some issues to happen to us, but then give us His grace to manage them and learn to live with them. It is surprisingly shocking, but it is what it is. Maybe because He needs to humble us, or else we may go back to our old ways. “I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back kind of situation.” The Bible says in the book of 2Corinthians chapter 5 verse 17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” Or like Apostle Paul, so he may not be boastful and prideful for God choosing him to do great works and evangelized in his generation at the time, but also because he went to heaven and came back. In fact the book of Corinthians chapter 15 verse 10, Apostle Paul said, “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.”
But there could be also reasons why our prayers are being delayed. In the book of Matthew 6:33, it says, “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”
The ‘all these things’ can also be those things we pray to God that we need divine intervention. Things God needs to intervene so that we can be delivered from. Things that even if we go to the hospital, they may not be able to cure us. Things because of our ignorance. Things only God can deliver us from, such as all kinds of generational curses, evil, and unfavorable conditions whether inherited or not, deadly diseases or addictions, occults, idol worship, witchcraft, delay of achievements, poverty, and so on. All things that can happen to you and sometimes you cannot explain, but you know you must come out of. But I am also talking about things that only God can empower you so that you can succeed and all things can go well with you. So that you can prosper in all your ways in this life, and being made whole.
I mean, in business, almost every company or organization has its own ways of how to handle and operate things. They have their own administrative policies and protocol to follow through. Therefore it’s not surprising that in the Kingdom of God to have their own ways of how we must work the faith and receive answered prayers. And according to Matthew 6:33, one of them is we need to seek the Kingdom of God and His righteousness first. We have to seek God and learn how He operates, and find out His Will for us, get to know His Word and promises.
When our answers look like they are taking longer than expected, it could be God wants us to go deeper in Him and His Word to know Him, and understand how to claim His promises and how things works in His Kingdom, and during the process we will get the answers to our prayers. It could be that God wants us to seek Him for Him and not because we want something from Him. It could be He wants us to fellowship with Him, and know Him for who He is, a loving Father, a Sovereign God. Not just coming and take from Him, and leave. He wants to continue to fellowshipping with us.
The Lord Jesus said in the book of John chapter 16 verse 23, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask The Father in My Name, He will give you.” He also said in the book of John chapter 15 verse 7, “If you remain in Me and My Words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, it will be done for you.” But also He said in the book of Mark chapter 11 verses 24 and 25, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.”
The book of First John chapter 5 verse 14 to 15 says, “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.”
All these scriptures above are promises and few examples that are found in the Holy Bible that say God answers prayers. Some of us we have experienced the truth of these scriptures in our lives. We may not have all our prayers answered yet, but we have most of them answered.
There could be some things that we may be doing that could hinder our prayers. Maybe because we have doubt and lack faith, but also it could be because of lack of knowledge, negative thinking, wrong mentality of things, et cetera. In the book of James chapter 1 verse 5 and 6 say, “If any of you lacks wisdom, he would ask God, Who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.” The book of Hebrews chapter 11 verse 6, it says, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.”
The book of 2 Chronicles chapter 7 verse 14 says, “If my people, who are called by My Name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” So if our prayers are not answered on time, it doesn’t mean the answer is no. It means we are being considered, but we may need to change some of our corrupted, maybe also poverty mindsets, and seek to understand God’s promises, but also like the scripture says, humble ourselves before God so that our prayers can be effective for God to give us that business idea, make us prosper, heal us, and deliver us.
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