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When God Says “Wait”, or “No”

How many times have you expressed dismay over what God is NOT doing for you?  Does He really answer your prayers?  At various times most of us have thought the very same thing; perhaps you are struggling right now with this topic.

A good pastor will tell you that God DOES answer prayers; he answers each and every one that is prayed in good faith by a believer in Christ.  However, what we sometimes aren’t willing to accept is that God’s answer is oftentimes “No” or “Wait”, when we think it should be “Yes”.

Americans in general are impatient, and men stereotypically are less patient than women.  Adding that together with a personality that is lacking in patience, and when God tells me to wait, I have had problems with that.  But through time and understanding, I can appreciate what He is doing in me- while he says “Wait”, or even “No”.

Many Christians believe earnestly that their own heartfelt and sincere desires and prayers should line up with and by granted by God.  While that makes sense in a simple manner, it is just not true more often than not.  Your own goals for your life are very possibly NOT God’s mission for you.  You may want to be rich, or a successful doctor, or you may desire a large family.  None of those wishes seem wrong- but for a myriad of reasons they may not be what God has in store for you.

In the book of Job, it is quite clear that we cannot and do not grasp what God has planned for us.

Job 42:2, 5-6 – “I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted.  I had heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You, therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”

Job 23:13-14 – “But He is unchangeable, and who can turn Him back?  What He desires, that He does.  For He will complete what He appoints for me, and many such things are in His mind.”

The Holy Father will do what he desires.  He may allow turmoil and heartache in our lives.  He may not grant the wish that we have been longing for, but that does not mean that he is not listening.  And it does not mean he does not reciprocate and answer.  If you listen closely, in the daily and ongoing actions of our lives, you will hear Him.

For myself, I had prayed every night for close to nine years for something and someone very important to me.  Those were 9 long and painful years, but I did truly have faith that God would answer and fulfill a reconciliation.  And eventually, He did.  During the many years He guided me and strengthened me and formed me into a better person and Christian.  Praise be to God….

What are you longing for?  Do you believe?

About Ken

Ken Lambert, D.Min, lives with his wife and twin boys in southern New Hampshire, and has written for a variety of religious and secular publications. He is co-author of Top Ten Most Influential Christians- since the Apostles, and is an adjunct instructor for Agape Seminary (Church History, Wisdom Books).

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