When God delays his answers to our prayers, it can be frustrating. If we don’t see immediate responses, we tend to lose heart and give up. I am convinced that our Father doesn’t want us to call it quits when we pray. But, what should we do when God delays his answers to our requests?
Though we know it’s not true, divine delays feel like God is playing cruel games with his children. Now, whether we say it or not, we think like this: “God knows my needs. Why doesn’t he answer my prayers and bless me with what I need.” I know we might not like it, but it is futile for us to argue and complain about his plan for the world and our lives. It is wise to submit our lives to his agenda, rather than to fight his loving and perfect plan. Many times, we are too immature and blind to understand what God is doing.
Though we are content to accept God’s plan for our lives, it doesn’t mean we should stop praying. We should continue to press in and never quit – until we believe God has said no (Luke 18:1). The Father delights in us spending time with him and telling him our needs. He loves hearing and answering our prayers. God is a good, good Father and we must trust his plan for our lives. He loves us more than we can imagine.
Why God Delays His Answers
If God is so good and loves us so much, why are there so many delays? There are at least five reasons why God might delay his answers to our prayers.
- We have an enemy. The devil hates us and is against us receiving answers from God. Notice in Daniel 10:12-14 that God heard Daniel’s prayer, and dispatched the angel Gabriel with a message for him. But, Gabriel was hindered by a satanic adversary. Thus, the response was delayed. So, sometimes, the evil one causes havoc and chaos to delay the answers to our prayers.
- Some prayers involve other people. God does not force people to cooperate with his will, but he works with them patiently so they can see and do the right thing willingly. This takes time. Hence the delays.
- There are things that God is developing in us while we persevere in prayer. God’s plan is for us to grow up spiritually. He wants to enlarge our faith and encourage us to develop a closer relationship with him. If every answer came immediately, would we press in and spend time drawing closer to God? Probably not.
- God delays his answers to allow time for conviction, confession, and repentance. Sometimes, sin prevents answers to our prayers (Psalm 66:18) and God graciously and patiently wait for us (2 Peter 3:8-9).
- God delays his answers to our requests so that he can get maximum glory for our lives and our present situation (John 11:1-4).
Keep Praying During the Delays
What should we do when God delays his answers to our prayers? We should not lose heart and quit praying. I believe God wants us to keep praying during the delays. When we pray, let’s make sure we are praying according to his will (1 John 5:14-15). Delays, even long ones, do not mean that God denies our requests. When we pray, let us not lose heart, but trust the heart of the One who loves us more than we can imagine.
While you wait on God, declare this: I will not give up in prayer!
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