Oftentimes when things don't work in the way we saw them working out when we prayed about them, we may feel like God forgot about us, or didn't answer our prayers, or that the outcome is somehow of the devil.
The reality is that God's ways are not like our ways -- He sees things in our circumstances that we cannot see, let alone wrap our minds around. So when things don't go as we would have planned them, we still must trust that they are working out for our own good in some way.
This is something that I myself have to continuously work through. From the most complex things -- like my struggles in parenting that I want to be delivered from so badly; all the way to the smallest of things -- like when I get caught in traffic.
However big or small, we have to trust that God Almighty knows better than we do. We have to believe that in the same way we who are parents expect our children to understand and grasp the rules that we place upon them, even when they make no sense to our children, we are to trust what God is doing in our lives.
There are few attitudes more discouraging and damaging to faith than the feeling that God doesn't hear our prayers, doesn't answer, or doesn't care. And it can be easy to conclude all three of these things when God doesn't respond when or how we want.
The apostle Paul could have drawn the conclusion that God doesn't listen to people. He begged God to intercede for him in a trial. But God declined Paul's request.
In 2 Corinthians 12: 7-8 Paul stated, "I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me. Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away."
Paul could have drawn the conclusion that God had not heard him and his prayers. But the reality was that God just gave Paul a different answer:
God replied, "My gracious favor is all you need. My power works best in your weakness."
From this, Paul came to a deeper spiritual understanding that strengthened his faith and commitment, which is the ultimate goal for each and every one of us in our lives.
Paul said, "So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may work through me. Since I know it is all for Christ's good, I am quite content with my weaknesses and with insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong." (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)
Paul understood that God in His perfect love for us will never allow us to stumble into trials greater than what we can endure, with His strength within us. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. (1 Corinthians 10:13)
Sometimes our way out is merely through the fortitude to withstand the trial; to draw nearer to Christ and to further grow in our own personal walk with him.
So the next time you find yourself on your knees, praying to God for your circumstances, understand that God hears your cry, and He has an answer in store for you, in His time -- within His will and His way. Your prayers never fall on deaf ears.
Moment of Reflection:
Have you ever felt like God didn't care, or didn't answer your prayers when something didn't go your way? How did it make you feel?
A Note About the Author (by the author):
Bijee (aka B) is an outgoing and determined young woman trying to be the best that she can be. Her greatest blessing is her friends and family, which consists of her husband and two children. She doesn't take lightly to being a good wife, mother, daughter, and friend. The ultimate goal is to be a role model to her children and a good woman to her longtime best friend and husband. She strives to show her daughter what a good woman looks like and to model what her son should be looking for when the time comes. This attitude and approach is outlined and guided by Titus 2 and Proverbs 31. You can find her at The Reflections of a Good Woman where she blogs about Faith, Family, Friendship and balancing life.
Thank you so much, Bijee!