Have you ever felt like maybe God wasn't listening to you? Have you ever prayed and prayed for something and waited for answers that didn't seem to be coming? I think its okay as a Christian to admit that sometimes, it feels like God is silent. That He isn't answering our prayers. There's nothing wrong with feeling like that, because sometimes, we do pray for something and we don't get what we're asking for.
Its a good idea to know that some seasons, God may seem more quiet than others. I've gone through seasons where I just wanted to scream to God "Why aren't you answering me?!" I remember working at a job I hated, praying and praying for months for a way out. I prayed for healing when I first was diagnosed with my autoimmune disease but, I still have a chronic disease. Maybe you've prayed for something, big or small and you don't know why God isn't answering.
First of all, I want to tell you that whatever you feel like God is withholding from you, it is because it is not best for you right at this time. God's timing is good and perfect, all the time. Is it possible that what you're praying for might actually be bad for you? Just because we desire something, it doesn't mean it is God's best for us. Take heart knowing that God is the giver of good and perfect gifts, and He knows what is ultimately good for us, even though sometimes God's best may not match our own desires.
Second, has God given you an answer that maybe you just don't like? Because in my experience, I've accused God of not answering my prayer when in fact, He did answer. But sometimes, His answers are not easy to accept, or even understand. And thats okay. Its okay to not understand. But we need to realize that although God knows the desires of our heart, and often He is the one that places desires in our heart, we are still human with sinful and selfish nature and we don't always know what is best for us.
Third, I would ask you if you are seeking after God with everything you have. Are you continually spending time in His word, soaking up His wisdom? Are you have conversation with Him, inviting him into your day, asking Him to give you guidance and wisdom? I would like to encourage you to really invest in your relationship with God and give Him a chance to speak. Set aside the distractions and connect with Him. And know that this requires dedication-although God can and will speak sometimes the minute we start praying, sometimes it takes patience and perseverance.
"Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened." Matthew 7:7-8
If you are in a season where you feel like God is silent or not answering a prayer, heres what I would encourage you to do
- Seek God with all your heart- Talk to Him, and read His word. Do everything you can to seek after Him.
- Look in His word for an answer-sometimes, what we're wanting direction on is already addressed in the Bible. Reference scripture on whatever topic you are praying about, and read what God already has to say about it
- When you start to stress or worry, repeat over and over "I trust You God. You are in control, so I don't have to be."
- Examine your life-Ask yourself is there is any area in your life that you may not be living pleasing to God. This isn't to say God doesn't answer prayers if we commit a sin, because we are all sinners who fall short. God's Grace is a free gift he gives to each of us, but its important to recognize these areas in our life and confess them and ask for forgiveness. Sometimes Sin is tricky and it can block us from hearing God's voice.
- Ask for prayer and counsel from trusted friends and mentors
- Don't lose heart. God is FOR YOU!
I hope this is encouraging to you. Sometimes it seems like God is silent, but I promise He is always for you, pursuing you, smiling over you, and fighting for you.