If there’s one subject that I continually have more questions about the deeper I go in the Christian life, it is probably prayer.
How should we do it? How should we expect God to answer? Why does it often seem so unpredictable?
There are times when I’ve prayed and seen God answer in instant and miraculous ways, and there are times when I’ve prayed fervently and repeatedly and yet not received the hoped-for answer. I’m guessing if you have been a Christian for a while, you’ve experienced the same.
Today I’m pleased to share a post I wrote on the topic for Gracefully Truthful, and I’d love it if you’d join me there to read it. It’s not a post with all the answers, but hopefully there will be some helpful reflections.
I wrote this post last summer, so it’s interesting to read it again several months later. In the post I share about a situation I was praying for at the time – a friend’s husband who was seriously ill. He actually passed away only a day or two after I submitted the post.
I don’t know why our prayers weren’t answered as we hoped in that situation. I don’t know why a wonderful, godly man had to die so young, or why my friend and her children have had to experience such pain and grief, but I do know the whole family have known God’s presence through it all. I have seen God at work in them and in their situation, and I know my friend would be the first to encourage people to keep on praying.
When our prayers aren’t answered as we hope, it’s easy to lose the sense of expectation of what God can do as we pray. This post is an encouragement, to myself as much as to anyone else, to hold on to that expectation and to be open to being surprised by God. It’s an encouragement that even if our faith is imperfect, the one to whom we pray is able to respond in ways far beyond anything we can ask or imagine. It’s an encouragement to keep on praying!