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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

We Pray Wednesday: How does God answer our prayers?

Many times in our life we offer our request to God and ask Him for things that we want or need.  We also begin to question God as to why He doesn't answer our prayers.  Many times He answers our prayers, but not always the answer we want.  Think about how your parents answered your request or how you answer your children's request.  We are called the children of God, and many times he answers our request the same way.
            1.  No, I love you too much.
How many times have we told our children, no? We do not tell them no because we want to say no.  We say it because we know what they are asking for is not good for them.  If they ask us if they can jump off the roof and be Superman, do we say no because we don't like Superman, because we don't want them to have an imagination and play, or because we love them and don't want them to get hurt.  I believe that is what God tell us sometimes.  He knows that if He gave us what we wanted, it would not be good for us.  Matthew 11:7 says, " If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?"  God does not want to give something to us that would be bad for us or hurt us, because He loves us.

            2.  Yes, when you are ready.
Many times my children have asked my wife and I for things that they think would be neat to have.  As a parent, I want will gladly give it to them, but only when they can handle the responsibility and problems that it may cause.  My son loves big machines like cranes, bull dozers, and dump trucks. He would love for me to buy one for him to play with as a toy. I will not buy him a real one because he is only four years old.  I do not believe anyone would say to me, "I think he should have one of those."  Why? Because he is not ready for it yet.  When he is ready, and I have won the lottery, I might buy him one.  God is the same way.  He knows everything, and he knows if and when we are ready for it.  
3.  Yes, but not the way you want.
Children many times say to their parents. "I want it!"  The parent replies, "Oh, you are going to get it." These are the exact same words, but not the same meaning.  We pray to God and say God I want it, and God says you will get it, but not the WAY that you want it to be given to you. This is probably the hardest answer that we receive from God.  We have to remember that God is omnipotent which means that He knows EVERYTHING!  Psalms 18:30 says, "As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him."  This means He does EVERYTHING perfect.  I know many people that are angry and bitter toward God because they prayed for a friend or loved one to be healed from sickness and God did not heal them the way that they wanted.  In fact, some of these friends or loved ones died.  We say, "God you did not answer my prayer."  In reality, He did answer it.  Those friends and loved ones, that have trusted Christ as their Savior, are now perfectly healed. 

4.  Yes, plus something more.
In Louisiana, we have a word for something a little more than you wanted.  It is Lagniappe.  It is usually used when we are talking about food.  When I take my wife out on a date, I can go anywhere they serve food and eat.  That is the reason that we are going out, is to spend time with each other and eat.  I want her to enjoy herself on the date not just eat and spend time with me.  Because of this, I make sure that there are some things I do to help make it more special.  I will clean up the car, dress up, get her some flowers, go to a nice restaurant where they have white table clothes and music, and most importantly let her have coffee and dessert.  All of those things are not necessary to have a date, but that is what I like to do for her.  This is exactly what God wants to do for us.  Not because He has to, but because He loves us and want to do this for us.   
5.  Yes, I hoped you would ask.
This is the way I think God want to answer us more than all the others.  Many times we want to give the people that we love and care about the most the things that they love.  Sometimes, especially as parents, we want to get things for our children, if they will simple ask us instead of tell us that they want it.  Do we ask God for things or demand that He give them to us?  If we would ask, He may be just waiting to give it to us.

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