This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 1 John 5:14, NIV
As vital to the Christian life as prayer is, we often find ourselves frustrated with the process. We feel like we don’t know what to say or wonder if He even hears the cries of our hearts that have gone unanswered for so many years.
We come to God in prayer, not intending to treat him like that proverbial “vending machine”, yet find ourselves praying the same worn out words, asking for the same things we always do, and feeling stagnant and stuck. While prayer is not a one-way conversation with the God of the cosmos, it can often feel like that in seasons of silence. When prayers go unanswered for weeks, months or even years, these seasons can cause us to want to throw in the towel.
We think, What's the point if He is not listening anyway?
But John reminds us so beautifully of the confidence we should have in approaching the throne of God in prayer. If we ask anything in accordance with the will of God, He hears us. Because He is listening, we can pray with great faith knowing that He longs for us to ask, seek, and knock. God’s response can be assured, while at the same time, the act of prayer doesn’t ensure God will answer the way we want.
God doesn’t always answer right away, in the way we would like, or on our timeline. But He does hear us. It is a mysterious notion that His “hearing” us essentially promises hope in His response - even if it feels like silence. In the quietness and stillness of the night, when we cry out to the Creator of the heavens and the earth, He hears us. Like we long for our own children to open up to us, God knows intimacy is entangled in solicitation. As we come to God in prayer, relationship evolves. The almighty God who rules and reigns is near to us. The process of prayer, outrageously, is just as important as the outcome. Think about Hebrews 4:16. “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
In approaching God and with confidence, we find that the mercy of Christ covers all and His grace sustains us in seasons of waiting. In whatever season we find ourselves, whether in desert times or in times when the harvest is abundant, may we never neglect to confidently call on Him, trusting and believing that He hears us. And as we commune with Him in this way, we begin to find ourselves longing more for the Giver rather than the gifts He can give - for the relationship. While John gives us this confidence in approaching God; that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us, Hebrews embraces that His hearing us brings about our great delight in Him, which allows our hearts to be filled with His desires and not our own.
Your fellow Able Mom,
Meredith W. Boggs
Lord, may I never grow weary of calling on your name, especially in seasons of silence and waiting. Help me to believe that you always hear me and to approach your throne with confidence, asking according to your will.