“I know what I need. My motives are pure. Certainly this prayer request is something God would want to answer.” How often do these thoughts run through our minds? And when He doesn’t give us what we asked for, we’re perplexed and even a bit agitated. How do we deal with unanswered prayer?
Jesus addresses this quite vividly in Matthew 7. Jesus invites us to come to Him with our requests, but then says this:
“Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him” (Matthew 7:9-11).
Unanswered prayer is the result of us asking for stones and serpents and God giving us bread and fish instead. Which is why getting upset over unanswered prayer makes no sense whatsoever. So often we’re asking God for something that will devastate us when He wants to give us something that will nourish us. In our prayer lives, God refuses to let us settle. We need to have the humility to remember God chooses better for us than we could ever choose for ourselves.