The Lazarus Project

Resurrecting hope for Christian victims and survivors of family violence.

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What are we to think when we feel that God has not answered our prayer?

    I know that there have been times that God did not come through for me the way I wanted Him to. And one time, I got really mad and threw a little hissy fit about it! (I'm ashamed to say that now, but it's true.)  At the time, it caused me to question God's faithfulness.  I guess I had expected that my prayers were like a push-button reaction that would provide an immediate response, and when that response was not immediate, I was disappointed.

    That was probably thirty years ago.  Since then, I've learned a few things.

    Like that God is God, and I have no right to demand that He do something when I want Him to.  He is not required to perform on my timetable.  He might. And, He might not. But He's God, and He gets to make that decision, not me.

    When I think back on that time when I threw a little hissy fit 'cause God didn't answer my prayer immediately, I liken it now to a spoiled child throwing a tantrum in a grocery store. You know what I'm talking about: screaming, crying, stamping his feet, demanding that his Mommy buy him is favorite cereal or toy car.  Quite likely embarrassing his mother, and certainly frustrating the store clerks and other shoppers.

    But that spoiled child learns one of two lessons when he throws a fit: either Mommy gives in to the pressure, and does his bidding (which teaches him entitlement and bad manners), or Mommy firmly picks him up by the belt loops on his jeans and carries him out of the store, turning the embarrassment back on him, and gives him a lecture when they're back in the privacy of her car.  By refusing to allow him to dictate her actions, she teaches him delayed gratification, and gives him a much-needed dose of humility when he remembers that Mommy is in charge, not him.

    And Mommy might need to hold him tightly while he kicks and screams, restraining him from hurting her or others while he is out of control.  Or she might just deposit him in the back of the car and let him exhaust himself while he lets his temper out.  And on the way home, she might very well be silent, so that she doesn't explode like he just did.  After a little while, when he regains control of his senses, she might give him a hug and remind him that she loves him, even if she doesn't like his actions.

    What on earth does this scenario have to do with your situation? Everything.

    You see, we are all God's little boys and girls.  And sometimes, we demand our way and expect God to give us what we want just like the spoiled kid in the store.  We demand a job promotion, or a pay increase. Or the spouse we've been waiting for. We want what we want, when we want it, and we expect God to supply it because He's our Daddy. "I want my miracle, and I want it now!!!"

    But Jehovah Jireh is not a wimpy parent.  He knows what we need, even when it's not what we want.  And sometimes what we need is a reminder that He is the one that is in control. 

    Why does God provide miracles for some and not for others?  I wish I cold say.  Why does God heal some miraculously, and some through the marvels of medical science?  I don’t know.  Why does God provide wealth for some of His children and mere sustenance for others?  I don’t have a clue.

    And, being the analytical person I am, I’ve really tried to figure it out.  But I’ve finally come to the conclusion that many scientists have come to understand while pondering the huge questions of the universe: the simplest solution is usually the right one.

    Like little kids who question why this and why that, the answer is simple: because Mommy said so, that’s why. 

    And we can try all we want to understand it, and we never will, because He’s God and we are not.  Just like a child thinks as a child and understands as a child, they will never understand the adult world until they become an adult.  His ways are far above our ways. Always have been; always will be.

    God is our Daddy, and He will take care of us, His precious (and sometimes spoiled) children.  And that’s all we need to know.  How He does it is His business.  Why He does it one way and not another is His concern.


---Christine Hagion Rzepka

Posted on 06/03
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