Yes or No? When God Doesn’t Answer Our Prayers the Way We Want

I have a question for you. Is it true that whatever we ask in prayer, believing, we will receive? Yes or no? _____ What is your Scripture reference? If you said yes and provided Matthew 21:22 as your source, then why didn’t God answer Jesus’s prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane? Certainly, Jesus asked in prayer, believing. On a more personal level, why doesn’t God answer the prayers of the faithful to heal their dying loved one? I certainly don’t have all the answers, but I do know that it is important for us to take the whole counsel of God rather than “cherry pick” verses. In the context of prayer, Jesus has already taught His disciples important, foundational principles of prayer in “The Lord’s Prayer.” We have a Father in heaven who alone is holy. He has a kingdom and will. Twice in the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus referenced God’s kingdom – at the beginning and end of the prayer. It was clearly on His mind and a central part of His teaching on prayer. In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus echoed Matthew 6:10, “Your will be done,” even while He allowed us to hear His “Son of Man” desire to avoid suffering, shame, and separation. As disciples of Christ it is critical for us to study and know the whole counsel of God. In the context of today’s question, we must remember Christ’s foundational teaching on prayer – praying God’s will. First John 5:14-15 is helpful. “This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.” Can you trust your life and loved ones to God’s will?

Heavenly Father and Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for not only teaching us how to pray but for also modeling it. We love and adore You. Help us be wise stewards of Your word by our words and life. 

Prayer of My Heart – where I record my prayers and my Heavenly Father’s responses. Available on Amazon. 

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