Do you ever feel like God doesn’t listen to your prayers? Do you ever feel like His answer is always “no!” I’ve often felt that way myself, but don’t worry. There is a solution! Below are five steps that I can all but guarantee will allow you to see more answered prayers in your life.
1. The first step is to pray for wisdom, not just in your life but in how you pray. James 1:5 says, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”
2. Seek God’s will first and foremost. First John 5:14-15 says, “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: and if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.” Notice that it says, “His will” and not “our will.” That’s a very important difference.
3. Before you even ask for anything, be thankful for what God has already done. Then, be thankful for what He will do! Philippians 4:6 says, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”
4. Now that you are wisely considering your requests, seeking God’s will, and being thankful for the work He is doing in your life, pray and make your requests known to God.
5. Finally, and this is a very important part of “seeing” more answered prayers, write down your prayer requests AND make sure to write down when and how they are answered.
Now I’m sure you can see that these steps don’t actually cause God to answer your requests more often. These steps aren’t magic, they aren’t a ritual that makes your prayer requests more likely to be heard, and they most definitely don’t change God’s mind. What they do do is change your mind. They put your heart in the right mindset. You and your prayers are not focused on yourself, but rather on God’s will for your life.
That last step, writing your prayers down, is pretty important for the whole “seeing more answered prayers” part. Why? Well, I’m not like an elephant.
You see, “An elephant never forgets.” Well, at least that’s the popular saying, but we forget all the time. Take the Hebrews in Exodus for example. They liked to complain that God wasn’t taking care of them. “And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?” (Exodus 17:3).
We often look at the Hebrews and think, wow how could they have such great doubt after seeing God’s work and the amazing miracles He used to get them out of Egypt? It seems almost unbelievable that they would doubt so quickly. Sadly, I don’t think we are so different. We often forget all the good God has done in our lives as soon as our prayers are answered.
So, one reason it may seem that God isn’t answering our requests is that He answers so many so often that we don’t even recognize Him working. It’s only when we don’t get the answer we want or in the time frame that we want that we feel that He’s not listening or has abandoned us. My how quickly we forget! So this exercise of writing down our prayers isn’t to keep God accountable. It’s to keep us accountable when we doubt. When things aren’t going our way, we can look back and see all the times God has answered our prayers.
God knows our requests before we even ask. Prayer is for our benefit, not His. He wants us to reach out to Him and seek His will.Click to tweet
I’ve started this in my own life. I haven’t written down all my requests, but I’ve written down some of the big ones. I have prayed for wildfires to change direction, and they have. I’ve prayed for people to be healed, and they have been healed. I’ve prayed for help with my finances, and He’s come through. This is not because of my power but because of His.
Now, there have also been many times that I’ve prayed for people to be healed and they’ve died. I’ve prayed for jobs and opportunities to come through and they’ve failed. It’s not about getting what I want but what God wills. That being said, I have a sneaking suspicion that if you write down all your prayer requests and make sure to write down the result when they are answered… even if the answer is “no”… you’ll see God’s faithfulness. You’ll see Him coming through and even granting your prayer requests way more often then you’ve been giving Him credit for.
Brother, God knows our requests before we even ask. Prayer is for our benefit, not His. He wants us to reach out to Him and seek His will. There may even be those times you don’t know how to pray for what you need. You aren’t even sure what you need. Well, thankfully we have the Helper.
“Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.” – Romans 8:26-27
What do you think? Are these steps helpful? Let me know! Have you had any prayers answered that surprised you? Share how good our Lord is in the comments below!
Family Radio Staff