Weekly Devotional 050624

“Unanswered” Prayers

by Kat Clark

“If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and He will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if He does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”
–Daniel 3:17-18

As I read today’s Bible verse, it got me thinking about the times when God doesn’t answer our prayers in the way or in the timeframe that we’d like. These aren’t really ‘unanswered’ prayers, because God hears all prayers. Sometimes God says “no” and sometimes He says “wait.” In our humanness, it is easy to view these answers as silence. What do we do when we pray fervently for healing but we aren’t getting better? How do we handle it when we pray for a much-needed job and the rejections keep rolling in? What happens when we pray for a loved one to come to faith but their heart remains hardened? Do we continue to worship and trust in God, or do we turn to earthly idols to bring us comfort?

“But even if He does not, we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.” God is sovereign at all times. If I trust in God’s sovereignty when everything is going the way I want it to, I must also trust in the sovereign God during hard times; even when I feel like God isn’t answering my prayers. I must admit this is something I am still working on. When we face unanswered prayers, we must remember that only God knows what is truly best for us. He has a plan for us, and that plan is to prosper us and not to harm us (Jeremiah 29:11). Sometimes God’s unanswered prayers are gifts we have yet to recognize. May we trust and worship God—and only God—not only when our prayers are ‘answered’ but also when we are still left longing.

Father God, we know You answer our prayers in accordance with Your sovereign will, even when we cannot see the answers as good. Please forgive us for the times we turn to earthly idols in our human impatience. Please help us to trust in You and turn to You at all times. In Your mighty name, Amen.

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