Thursday, August 12, 2010

More Questions . . .

I've been seeking God for answers lately. I have a lot of questions. Faith is like that. And as I pursue understanding in my life's circumstances, God isn't answering my prayers in the way that I expect Him to . . . but He's answering them- according to His will. And that is enough for me. He tells me His grace is sufficient . . . it continues to be MORE than enough. He urges me to walk by faith and "lean not unto my understanding." He strengthens me beyond words . . . even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death . . . I don't have any fear of evil. But, what do I make of my prayers that are going seemingly unanswered? Does God ALWAYS answer prayer? Jesus says He does . . . and I trust Jesus. So, there arises another question in my faith walk:

Is there such a thing as "unanswered prayer"? I don't believe so, according to God's Word. (Matthew 7:8, 1 John 5:14-15) But, what I find is that there are "unwanted answers." Too often, God doesn't give us what we want. He often, in those instances, blesses us with the power in His presence, and He speaks to us in ways that are more valuable than the things we pray for. Often times, God is saying to us, "I will not take away the trial, but I will give you the strength and peace to endure it." Another way He says that is: "I won't give you what you want, but I'll give you what you need." In times of desperation, God's grace "is sufficient." Through it all, through the unanswered questions, seemingly useless prayers, God is at work, doing greater things than we can comprehend. He's growing our faith-preparing us for a more meaningful, powerful, and valuable answer.

"You asked, 'Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?' It is I-and I was talking about things I knew nothing about, things far too wonderful for me." (Job 42:3 NLT)

"Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand!" (Psalm 139:6 NLT)

ALL that we know is incomplete. Until we go to meet Jesus or He comes to get us . . . we will face seemingly unanswered prayer . . . but when we are finally in eternity, we'll find that God answered every single one of our prayers . . . in His perfect way . . . in His perfect timing.

"Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely." (1 Corinthians 13:12 NLT)

I'm not sure what you're praying to God about . . . but I am almost certain you wonder if He's listening. You're wondering if God is with you and if He cares. Rest assured and believe by faith that God is with you . . .always. (Matthew 28:20) One way or another, your prayers WILL be answered. Maybe not the way you planned. Maybe not in the way you expected God to handle it all. Things may not turn out the way you hope. But, you will see God's hand at work . . . if not in your circumstances, most certainly in your heart. Despite what your current circumstances are telling you . . . God is with you. . . He is for you . . . and He is working things out for YOUR good and HIS glory.
One last question God has left me with in my conversations with Him regarding prayer . . .
"Does your faith depend upon God or your circumstances?"
Boy, God asks good questions!!! I guess that's why He's God. LOL.


NanaNor's said...

Dear Cherie, Such an incredibly powerful post today-so thought provoking and convicting. Thank you dear one for sharing His heart with us.

Bina said...

The song I will be singing on Sunday has a line that says: "Some things just don't change when I call Your name, but You never hesitate to wrap me in endless grace when I'm in Your arms." Great reminder that He isn't Santa or a shooting star...and sometimes the best thing we can do is lay down whatEVER we are holding onto at His feet and let Him wrap us up in His hug.

Great always!

Unknown said...

Cherie.. what a great post.. I heard our pastor say a few weeks ago,,
I have lots of questions for God,, and I tease him that sometimes he answers my prayer just to get me to shut up,,so he can have a little
Great post.. thanks for sharing

Cherie Hill said...

Wow Karen . . . I love that. It's given me a LOT to ponder on . . . much to speak to God about. What an incredible way to look at faith. When doubt takes hold of my mind, I love to just simply shout, "I TRUST GOD!"
Love to you sister!

Karen said...

Great words, as always...

During my lifetime, I have seen too many instances of miracles and answered prayer to dwell very long on my circumstances...I KNOW God is faithful....

alicia said...

Great post, Cherie. We do treat God like the genie in the bottle too often. I too believe there are no unanswered prayers, sometimes it just takes me awhile to see the answer.
Thanks for sharing today,

LisaShaw said...

Hi Cherie, I found you through my friend Melanie at Stepping Closer and the post she shared about you.

I enjoyed reading this message and I so relate..

I look forward to visiting again!

Lisa Shaw

Tammi said...

Dear Cherie, thank you so much for your encouraging comment today. . I'm so glad I stopped by here too! Your post just echoes the very same feelings I've been experiencing for the past several months. One thing I'm learning is God wants us to focus on the NOW, and not the END (or that specific answer we're looking for).. Are we trusting Him NOW? Are we growing closer to Him NOW? Are we resting in His sovereignty NOW. Oooh! That's been a big lesson. For me, it seems that the specific question I am seeking Him for is usually just the surface issue that God prompts in my heart---and then the more I seek, the longer I pray, and WAIT, He begins to show me there's a much deeper need that I wasn't even AWARE to pray for. Life, it sure isn't easy, but remembering that His ways and thoughts are NOT ours, and much higher than ours helps us to let go and trust Him in the "now." Sooner or later that "end" will come--and we'll see it all, from His perspective. It will make sense, and like you said, we shall certainly see He DID in fact answer our prayers. Sending big hugs to you and many thanks to our Heavenly Father for His tender mercy and patience--and for using you as an instrument in His hand to encourage my heart.

Cherie Hill said...

Sisters . . . you encourage my faith and give me strength for the journey. I'll be stopping by to visit each of you! ;)
Love, hugs, and prayers,

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I am so blessed that you would take the time to share your thoughts with me! You encourage my faith and I pray that God will fill you to the full with His love, mercy,and grace! With joy, Cherie

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