Do you ever wonder why God doesn’t answer your prayers?
You know the ones I’m talking about—the ones where you find yourself face-down on the floor, tears falling onto the rug, with sobs and pleas for deliverance?
The ones you want answered so badly your life is consumed with the wanting of it?
Perhaps you want a baby.
Maybe it’s the healing of a family member.
Those are worthy of an answer, right God?
Here is what I have learned—God is answering our prayers.
Sometimes his answer is, “Not yet.”
Sometimes his answer is, “No, not that way.”
I’ve been the recipient of those “not yet” and “No, not that way” answers, and it hurts. We think we know what is best for our lives. We know what we want, and we want it our way.
But God—He sees the ultimate picture we cannot yet fathom while in the midst of our trials.
He sees the spouse in your future, the one who will mend your broken heart.
He sees the baby in your future, the one who is worth all the waiting.
He sees the unexpected autism diagnosis and the child whose light cannot be hidden by a label.
While we often see the mess, and the hurt, and the pain, and the fear of the unknowns, He sees the beauty of our stories as they are woven together.
We only see the mess of our work in progress, but he sees the beauty of His handiwork as our stories are being written.
He sees the relationships He will provide to get you through those battles.
He sees the growth of your faith and your reliance on Him.
He sees the person you’ll become because of your trials.
He also knows that in answering all of our prayers with a yes, we would miss out on some of our greatest lessons and blessings.
Those years of infertility? They will teach you that in this life, you cannot control everything, and you have to give those things to God. That autism diagnosis you so feared? It will come with a child who brings life and love to you every day.
You see, this life—your life—it isn’t just about you. God knows that. He is using you to accomplish His purposes. When we learn that our pain has a purpose, that is when our most difficult trials truly become our greatest testimonies.