Weekly Thought Archives > Four Answers To Prayer

Four Answers To Prayer

I have been thinking a great deal about four answers to prayer that Ed Young, Sr. suggested:

1) “I can’t hear you”

2) “No”

3) “Wait”

4) “Yes”


Expanding these is a meaningful exercise.


Many times in the scripture, both old and new testaments, God tells an individual “I won’t hear you because of your sin and disobedience.” 


God says “no” to our self-indulgent prayers… particularly when what we want is contrary to the way that He wants to develop us.  For example, He said “no” to the Apostle Paul when he asked to have the thorn removed.  I realized that I had been praying for something that seems to contravene what He is doing in my life. 


I have been asking for feelings about things that are facts, not feelings.  Faith comes by hearing, not by feeling.


When He tells us “wait” He is talking about an active process in which we exercise faith and obedience.  Abraham went for thirteen years without hearing from God and He told him in his waiting “the promise still holds.”


Sometimes it is impossible for us to accurate identify when the answer is “yes.”  It is often wrapped up in circumstances we do not see fitting together.  It may be sometime before we can look back and see His “yes.”


The reaction to all these answers must come in His sovereignty, His love and His involvement in our lives.  Christ did this in Gethsemane when He said, “Thy Will Be Done……not mine.”  This should always be our attitude toward God.


It is dangerous to nag God as we try to get our will, not His.  We remember the scripture, “He gave them their desire, but with it leanness of soul.”



Think about this:  1) Where is God saying “wait” to me? 2) How does prayer change me? 3) What is my current heart condition before God?