There are so many times when I have been told to pray. Having a rough time? Pray. Don’t know what to do? Pray. Need something? Pray. So many times and situations prayer seems to be the answer, but is it really? Prayer, I find is more about the way to an answer and less of a solution (James 5:13-16).
Prayer has been a big part of my life for as long as I can remember. I grew up in a Christian home, so I was taught to pray at every meal and my parents prayed with me before bed. In my first post I described a few stories of prayer that I have experienced. However, this post is not going to be about prayer itself, but on what happens after.
God hears every one of our prayers (1 John 5:14-15, Micah 7:7). However, what do we do when we are waiting for him to answer us? This question is hard to answer, and I don’t think it can be completely answered (especially not by me), but here are some of my thoughts based on my life and things that I have experienced.
- After I say “Amen” I need to let it go. If I have asked for something, if I have asked God to take something from me, when I say “Amen” I need to surrender it to God and not take it back (Psalm 55:22). I will leave my prayer with God and know that he hears (Psalm 34:4).
- After I say “Amen” I need to do. (Exodus 14:15-16, Joshua 3:13) In these two instances God told the children of Israel to move forward, then the miracle happened (then God moved.) God steers moving ships, he waits for the ones in the harbour to start their engines.
- After I say “Amen” whatever answer I receive I need to move forward.
(2 Samuel 12:15-23) After God had answered David, David got up and went on with life. God always answers me (Isaiah 65:24). Regardless if the answer is what I want, I still receive one. But I can rest in the knowledge that God is my Father and that he cares for me (1 Peter 5:7), he knows the desires of my heart (Psalm 37:4), he is faithful (1 Corinthians 1:9), and he knows the best way for me (Proverbs 16:9).
(Side note): When we have received an answer from God, we can hold to that, even when things seem to take a turn. When the Israelites were in the process of leaving Egypt it seemed like God was taking them in circles, and to an extent he was, but he had a purpose in it (Exodus 13:17-18, Exodus 14:1-4). For all of God’s promises come to be (2 Corinthians 1:20-22). Not now doesn’t mean never.