The other day I engaged a Christian sister’s attention with the question: “Should all Christians’ prayer be answered?” Her answer was undisguised. It was to the affirmative. “Oh yes, yes” she smiled. “How can we claim to be true Christians if our prayer isn’t being granted? she questioned. I heaved a deep sigh and embarked on a reel of reasons for her to pause and examine the contrary.
Our desires aren’t the same. Even with an individual, his/her wishes keep changing with uncheckable constancy. Moment to moment we would wish we were this or that or that other. Or that we possessed this property or that, or that we made this or that monumental achievement or the next.
We strut every length and breadth of this world in search of what will please and make us happy little thinking about what will please others because we are minded, most of the time, to make the entire world ours and make it to work our way. If we each succeed in this regard just how many worlds shall we have? We shall gallantly end up having orderliness in reverse, chaos. And that won’t work in our interest.
James has a cutting edge observation in this connection. He says:”You want what you don’t have, so you kill to get it. You long for what others have, and can’t afford it, so you start a fight to take it away from them. And yet the reason you don’t have what you want is that you don’t ask God for it. And even when you do ask you don’t get it because your whole aim is wrong – you want only what will give you pleasure.” (James 4:2-3 TLB.)
Even when our course is right we may yet be considered wrong because we get bloated with pride. Our manner of administering justice may not justify justice – too mild or too severe – neither of which will award us credit. When, under these circumstances, we try to activate morals in the biblical standards we betray the need for it.
An unanswered prayer is God’s gift to cause us to desire a self re-examination of deeds and attitudes. God can’t allow us to abuse power that will stem from answered prayer that will cause our fellow human beings inconveniences. So, our unanswered prayer is a good dose of tonic for us to seek purity and all that will make for divine peace among mankind.
Christians, don’t be left out.