This is a feeling many Christians struggle with. When it comes to talking to God, we often don’t feel heard. We become, “tired.”
“Why won’t God answer,” we ask.
“Haven’t I done enough?”
“Does He even care?”
“Why am I even trying?”
(NIV) Romans 9:20, “ But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?'”
Unfortunately for us, we tend to forget who God is.
Yes, we forget.
We put God in the same place as a mortal.
We demand immediate answers because that is what our world has taught us.
These are antique ideas.
Our prayers, and our efforts seem so large in our eyes. But have we truly compared our own efforts to the King of all kings? The One who gave up everything for us?
Jesus walked this earth constantly ministering, and helping those around Him. Yet, as most of us sit in comfort, we forget all the blessings we have already been given.
Let me not take away the fact, we do struggle. But we need to be reminded that while we ask the Lord to move the mountain in front of us…we are miles away from the same mountain.
Ten Percent Of Everything
So many times we refuse to be consistent. God demands ten percent of us, and don’t think for a second that only includes money.
Prayer time. (Simply talking to Him, not just requesting)
Worshipping Him. (Praising God)
Not forsaking being ministered to. (Church provides this because it allows God to reach us through others. While we also are moved through conviction, and continue to grow through learning.)
These are all part of our relationship with Christ. These are all part of us making effort towards Him. We make Him involved in our daily life because we love Him, and He loves us.
Turning Away From God
So when we feel unheard, we need to make sure, we aren’t the ones making God feel unheard. It’s very possible we are the ones not listening.
(NLT) Mark 8:18 “’You have eyes–can’t you see? You have ears–can’t you hear?’ Don’t you remember anything at all?”
Like the people of old, we can turn our eyes away from God. We can turn our ears away from Him also. This desensitizes us, and our heart.
(NIV) Acts 28:27 “For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.”
In the blog, Christian Ignorance , I spoke of how we as Christians sometimes want to pick, and choose what we believe. We form God into our own “version.” Sometimes we want both the world and God. This simply cannot be done. As the blog points out, we will eventually only choose one.
And if we choose something other than God, then we can be certain that will affect our relationship with HIm.
Our Choice and God’s Plan
So very often, we forget the power of choice.
To resist temptation.
To resist believing the lie of fear.
To improve our relationship with Him.
To never feel settled as a Christian, but to instead move forward with Jesus.
And to bow down to an Almighty God, remembering Who He is to us.
Because if we remembered truly, then we would know God’s plan is much bigger than we could ever imagine. Through His perfection of love, He loves us even though we are flawed. Because in the end love never fails.
(NIV) Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
The Lord’s Timing
If we would recall, His timing is definitely not the timing of man.
Jesus says He is coming swiftly in Revelations. What we would determine as soon, contrasts drastically against what God determines as soon. Why is that?
The Lord takes His time.
(NIV) Isaiah 64:08, “Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, You are the potter; we are all the work of Your hand.”
In this matter, this is how God handles our requests. He takes His time. He waits, and watches for those who walk towards His door.
(NIV) Matthew 7:07- 08, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”
Some may read this, familiar with the scripture, and complain, “But I’ve tried.”
Behold, in the book of Luke, there is more to this message Jesus gives us.
(NLT) Luke 11:08, “But I tell you this–though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence.”
This scripture discusses a friend in need, who continues to knock at the door till he is answered. After Jesus tells the parable, He again brings up the ask, seek, and knock scripture.
Why are the two connected?
Christ desires this to be our passion for Him. We don’t give up. We don’t walk away when we feel unheard. But we are earnest in repeatedly going to Him.
The mountain we want Him to knock down? Instead of simply praying and waiting for God, we stand before the very mountain. Ready.
In prayer to the Lord, while in the same breath praising His name, we are relentless. We are not ashamed of our God. We are not simply asking for an answer for ourselves, but also for the glory of God.
Even when He doesn’t answer us, as we pray, we are comforted knowing He isn’t absent.
(NKJ) Psalm 18:06, “In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried out to my God. He heard my voice from His temple and my cry came before Him, even to His ears.”
We stand trusting Him, and continue asking.
(NKJ) Psalm 102:01-02, “Hear my prayer, O Lord, and let my cry come to You. Do not hide Your face from me in the day of my trouble; incline Your ear to me; in the day that I call, answer me speedily.”
We walk forward, and seek His hand.
(NKJ) Psalm 138:07, “Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me. You will stretch out Your hand against the wrath of my enemies, and Your right hand will save me.”
We continue knocking at the door, and He answers.
(NLT) Isaiah 59:01, “Listen! The Lord’s arm is not too weak to save you, nor is His ear too deaf to hear you call.”
Focus On God
When we give God sincere time, time we desire freely to give Him, He answers us in a most unexpected way. The reason?
(NIV) Romans 9:23, “What if He did this to make the riches of His glory known to the objects of His mercy, whom He prepared in advance for glory.”
We aren’t focused on His immediate answer. Instead, we are focused simply on Him.
So the answer to the question we ask God, “Why are You not answering?”
(NIV) 1 Corinthians 2:09-10, “However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” — the things God has prepared for those who love him–these are the things God has revealed to us by His Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.”
He has already answered our prayers, but we are the ones who must be patient to see the fruit of His works.
We must be patient, while the Potter continues to form us by His hand.
Have you struggled with prayer?
(Can’t get enough posts? Check out my second blog Peeking Beneath)