If a person is in right standing with God, yet does not receive an answer to a prayer, the story of Job can be of comfort. Job was an upright man. And God blessed him. But Satan claimed that Job was righteous just because of God’s blessings. Satan stated that if God withdrew His blessings from Job, the saint would stop being faithful. So, the Lord allowed the devil to test Job to prove the devil wrong. Satan sent great calamities on Job that he lost all of his possessions, children, and finally his health. But in all these matters Job did not lose his faith in God. And he said, “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him” (Job 13:15). Job passed the test. And God blessed him greatly for his faithfulness.
Another story of inspiration for this matter is that of Joseph (Genesis chapters 37- 47). Joseph was good and upright and stood up against temptations, but instead of being rewarded for his goodness, he was sold as a slave by his brothers and later was thrown into prison. For many long years while in prison,he wondered why God had forsaken him when he was faithful. He must have prayed long and hard and wondered why the Lord wasn’t answering him. But in time, we know how the Lord used this experience to make Joseph one of the most powerful men in all the earth.
The truth is that in these stories God never left His children (Hebrews 13:5). In fact, it was God’s loving hand that was working behind the scenes to bring a greater good for His children’s benefit (Romans 8:28). The Lord was orchestrating events to bless them in a mighty and supernatural way (Exodus 19:4). But they had to pass the test of faith. In spite of their suffering, they remained faithful to God.
God does answer the prayers of His children. But the answer may be: yes, no, or wait. Maybe the Lord is asking you to wait for His good timing. And the Lord assures you that no trial will test you beyond your ability to bear it and “He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it” (1 Corinthians 10:13). So, be patient and believe that God listens to your prayers and will do that which is best for you at His best time (Galatians 6:9) .
God has given us so many promises that He will be with us in hardships, “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. . . . Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him” (James 1:2-4,12).
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In His service,
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