The Problem of Unmet Needs


To avoid disappointment with God, understand that His actions and character always align.

Psalm 84:11-12

If God has promised to provide and is able, we might wonder why He doesn’t always meet our needs when we ask. But since He is faithful to His Word, we can know that the problem is never with Him.

Notice that in today’s passage, God’s promise to provide has a condition—it is given to “those who walk uprightly” (v. 11). So if God isn’t meeting our needs as we think He should, either He may have a different plan, or something in our life may be a hindrance.

  • Sin. One reason our prayers may not be answered is because there’s sin in our life and we are not living righteously. If God ignored disobedience and granted our requests, He would be affirming an unrighteous lifestyle.
  • Laziness. Although the Lord is the ultimate source of all we have, He has given us the responsibility of working in order to provide for our basic necessities (2 Thess. 3:10-11). If you’re a capable, able-bodied person who’s unwilling to work and wants something for nothing, God won’t reinforce your laziness.
  • Desires. It’s possible that the Lord hasn’t provided as you expected because your “needs” are really desires. If He sees that what you want won’t fulfill His plans for your life, He may be saying “no” because He has a “yes” that’s even better.

To avoid disappointment with God, understand that His actions and character always align. He won’t reward rebellion or laziness, and His answers to prayer fit with His goal of conforming us to Christ’s image. So if He hasn’t provided what you deem essential, He’s working to bestow a better blessing.

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