“When good people pray, the Lord listens, but he ignores those who are evil.” – Proverbs 15:29
We often hear people say that prayer is powerful (which is true). It could change a critical situation to a safer and normal one; it could heal people from a terrible sickness; it delivers each of us from temptation and evil and so on & so fort. Indeed, prayer is something that we rely on in situations beyond our control. But, there are times (I think this is more common than the first one) that people don’t understand why their prayers are not answered. There are some who don’t even believe at the power of it at all. We normally hear questions like, “Why is it that God doesn’t answer my prayer?” “Does He really care?” “You think He can give me what I’m asking for?” “Can He really make a miracle happen?” “How long do I have to pray before He hears me?” These are just some of the questions we normally ask when our prayers are not immediately (or not at all) answered. When God has been silent from us, we tend to look for the answers on our own. We try our best to come up with all possible reasons why our prayers are left unanswered.
Often times, we compare ourselves with others, thinking that, maybe the reason why God hears his or her prayers is because they’re more involved in church activities, they donate more to charity, they spend hours reading their Bible, etc.
Sometimes, we overlook the situation. We come up with different conclusions, and then in the end, we became more jealous and disappointed with ourselves, with others, and with God.
God does not need all our pious works. Yes, He is pleased with those who take time caring for other people, those who meditate on His Words, and those who share His Good News to others, etc. But it does not mean that God only hears them and rejects the others. What God cares about is our intentions whenever we pray. He does not listen to your neighbor’s prayer because he or she reads his or her Bible 15 times a day or because he or she gives his or her tithes and you are not. It is not about our actions, but it’s about our motives. God knows our thoughts. Even though we pray using our mouth, He listens and sees our hearts. He considers the prayer of those people who has unselfish intentions, those who let His will be done, and those who are faithful to His promises.
We pray not only because we want something to happen, or because we are desperate for a miracle. We pray because we want to give Him glory, to thank Him for everything, and for us to communicate with Him. Just take heart. Continue to be faithful to Him. He knows what to give and when to give it. Trust in His right timing.