So you have been praying and praying, believing, waiting… repeat. Did God hear you, is it true what he says in Jer. 33:3 that he hears us when we pray and he answers? Who knows maybe this thing you are asking is too hard for God, He cannot do it and he is embarrassed so he has decided to just keep quiet, or maybe we have our answer and we do not like it, or possibly we are still waiting and because the answer was not immediate we are fairly sure he misunderstood us and we need to rephrase the request; or could it be that we think we have faith, but our faith is not what it should be because we have forgotten to whom we pray. We have put God on our level and figure some stuff he can do while other stuff is just too hard. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!
Let’s look at some scriptures to remind ourselves who we are talking to and just what he can or cannot do.
Jeremiah 32:17 “Ah Lord God! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm,(and) there is nothing too hard for thee. Wait He made the heavens and the earth…that is a pretty big thing to do, don’t you think?
Job 42:2 “I know that thou canst do everything and that no thought can be withholden from thee.” Umm, he knows my thoughts!
Mark 10:27 “Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” All things…really?
Luke 1:37 “For nothing will be impossible with God.”
Matthew 19:26 “But Jesus looked at them and said, “with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” It was worth saying again…All things!
Sounds to me like God can do anything he wants all the way down to seeing and knowing your thoughts. It says (everything)…which encompasses anything you can think or imagine. Right? Websters says it this way: “the whole amount, quantity or extent of” which goes back to what I said: everything…is all-encompassing. There is nothing he cannot do.
We can go back and look at some of the (things) that God has done. In Exodus 14:4 we see God saying these words, “Then I will harden Pharaoh’s heart so that he will pursue them; and I will gain honor over Pharaoh and over all his army, that the Egyptians may know that I am the Lord.” Wait, what! , he can harden someone’s heart if it pleases him to do so? So, He (God) can and does control someone’s heart. Interesting… Then go a little further down and you see where God parted the Red Sea for his people. Exodus 14:16,21 “But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide it.” 21 “Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea into dry land, and the waters were divided.” A strong wind, so, God controls the wind too?
Then in the book of John, we read about Lazarus. Lazarus and his sisters were friends of Jesus, he loved them very much and Lazarus got sick, very sick; his sisters sent for Jesus to come, but Jesus did not go immediately, so Lazarus died. He was in the tomb or four long days. In other words, he was very, very, starting to decay dead! So, we pick up in John 11:38 “Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. 39 “Take away the stone,” he said. “But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man,” by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there for four days.” 40 Then Jesus said, “Did I tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” 41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”
WOW! You mean he can raise the stinky, decaying in the grave four days dead? Now I would say that rates under the (everything, anything) wouldn’t you? And did you notice, he did not go straight away, he hung back, waited until it was too late, at least in the eyes of his friends. But it wasn’t was it? He was right on time, his time, his way. The way that brought glory to him. And he reminded us by his prayer that God does indeed hear us every time we pray.
God will do what is best, He will do it in his timing, in His way. Sometimes our prayers are “no,” sometimes” wait,” and sometimes “yes,” but even those can take a while. All the while he is growing us, stretching our faith, teaching us and leading us. He is calling us out into the deep with him where our feet are made surer, and our faith made stronger. If we got every little thing in an instant we would be very shallow selfish people. We need to remember that our walk of faith is not just for us alone, but for those watching us as we travel this dry and weary land. How we respond to the answered prayers and the waiting prayers and the no prayers are very important to those looking on and to the growth of our own souls.
God loves us too much to give us second best, He will always give us what is best and since we do not know what that is; because our hearts are deceitful above all else, (Jeremiah 17:9), and it really cannot know what it needs for sure. If we get a no, then we can rest in the goodness of God knowing it is for our good. Regardless of where we are in the prayer arena, “no, wait, or yes,” we are told do this: 1 Thessalonians 5:18 “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” And then we are reminded to always do this: Psalm 34:1-3 “I will praise the Lord no matter what happens, I will constantly speak of his glories and grace. 2 I will boast of all his kindness to me. Let all who are discouraged take heart. 3 Let us praise the Lord together and exalt his name.”
He understands when we are praying that sometimes the waiting makes us discouraged, our faith sometimes gets a bit weary and weak, but when those times come we are to refocus our minds and hearts on the goodness of God and praise him for who he is, not what we want from him. In other words, seek the giver, not the gift! This God we are praying to takes care of the birds of the air, every living creature has what they need, because of him. Matthew 26-34.
I do not know where you are in your walk. Maybe today you are struggling with waiting for God to answer a prayer. Do not lose heart, he has heard and your answer is on its way; accept whatever comes, be it “no,” “wait,” or a “yes.” He may swing wide the door or He may slam shut a door, but he will do what is best for you and what brings glory to himself!
I am so thankful for a God who knows me because he formed me,(Jeremiah 1:5,) he knows my deepest thoughts and longings and above all, He alone knows what it takes to move me ever closer to his side and make me ready for heaven one day. I can trust his love for me. That love sent him to the cross to die and to rise up from the grave, it causes him to intercede on my behalf constantly. His love covers my sin and washes me white as snow. I think I can trust His answers! You?