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Does God answer prayer? I pray every morning and night and feel they go unanswered.
Thank you for asking a question about prayer. As Christians, we believe in the importance of prayer, that it is our ability to have a two way conversation with the one, true, living God.
We believe with all of our being that God is not just able to hear us when we pray to him, but that he is also able to answer us. Throughout the bible, and particularly within the teachings of Jesus, we see examples of people praying and God speaking to them, and we too believe that this is true for us today.
We can speak to God, and that God can speak to us.
Throughout Jesus' time here on earth, we read of the different ways that He prayed, indeed, His teachings regarding prayer give us some really great encouragement. Jesus Himself said that "if you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer" (Matthew 21:22), which is also echoed in Mark 11:24. Jesus also tells us to "ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!" (Matthew 7:7-11).
These verses and many others encourage us to pray, as we realise that Jesus is teaching us to ask, and be prepared to receive from God.
In the Bible, there are many examples of people speaking to God, and God speaking to them, and we believe that the same can be true of you today. In 1 Kings 19:11-13, a story is told of a man named Elijah, who goes to a mountain and waits for God. A mighty wind, earthquake and fire all come, but they are not the Lord, but then after the fire came a still small voice (v13). We expect God to be as loud as a feature film blockbuster, but God’s voice can be very quiet.
Jesus instructed us that "when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your father, who is unseen. Then your father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you" (Matthew 6:6). You might find that by spending some time in a quiet place and waiting for God to show Himself to you will allow you to experience Him, which could be through voice, imagery or even an emotion within you. I trust that you will be amazed at the result!
We should of course understand that although we ask for things, and God wants us to be blessed, this does not mean that God will always answer our prayers in the way we expect. Being of infinite wisdom, God knows what is best for us and we can trust him in his decisions. "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope" (Jeremiah 29:11). For this reason, we should submit your ways to God (James 4:7). Only by submitting ourselves to God do we see his plan, which is the greatest for our lives, be implemented. This may be difficult for us, because we think we know best, but we need to trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths (Proverbs 3:5-6).
If you submit your life to God, He can and will make your ways straight and his purpose be in your life. Why not spend some time in prayer? Ask God for forgiveness for rebellion against His rule, accept the work of His Son Jesus on the cross and trust Him. His most important plan for us is that we might be saved and have His forgiveness so that we might truly know Him. How can he guide our hearts if our hearts are rebelling against Him?
In summary, we believe that God can and does hear us when we pray to him, and that he wants us to ask things of him. However, we also acknowledge that God knows everything, and therefore knows what is best for us. It is for this reason that we should submit ourselves to his plan, so that we may know Him more and more.
Here are some more Bible Verses for your further consideration:
- Romans 12:2
- Matthew 18:19-20
- Philippians 4:6
I hope this answer helps you to find peace with God through Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: Watch the video
I encourage you to attend a local Bible believing church and speak to the leader about your question. If you want to find a local church, our Church Finder may help you: Find a Church
Please feel free to submit a question to us or to read our answer database: Ask a Question
*Taken From The New King James Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise
*If anything in this answer affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline
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