How to Pray When Your Answer Is Delayed
“Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours” (Mark 11:24 NIV).
God’s timing is perfect. We may think he’s late, but he’s never late. God’s delays are not God’s denials. “Not yet” does not mean “no.”
What should you do when your prayer is being delayed?
You keep on praying until one of three things happens:
1. You get the answer. When you get it, then you can stop praying for it — obviously.
2. You get the assurance that you’re going to get what you’re praying for. Sometimes God does that! He says, “I’m going to give you this,” and you’re sure of it. You stop asking God for it, and you start thanking God for it and acting on it. Mark 11:24 says, “Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours” (NIV).
When I was in high school, I got a letter one day that said I had received a four-year scholarship to college. I didn’t wait for the money to come in to start acting on it. I started getting ready. I bought some new clothes and got my van in shape. I got ready, said goodbye to my friends, and took off. I acted in faith. I had the assurance that money was coming, even though I didn’t have it in hand. We can act that way with God and believe in faith that he will deliver on his promise in his time.
3. You keep praying until God reveals to you that it’s not his will. When you figure that out, you become uncomfortable praying about it and you don’t have any peace, so you stop praying for that request.
In order to receive an answer from God, you’ve got to be willing to let God answer in his time! But he will answer because he is trustworthy, he hears your prayers, and he will respond.
Talk It Over
Think of a time when God responded to your prayer with, “Not yet.” How did you react?
If God has given you assurance about one of your prayers, what do you now need to do to act in faith?
Are you willing to let God answer your prayers in his time? How is that evident in your life?
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This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.