Robin J Johnson.
What do we do when it seems that our prayer is not answered in the way we believe it should be?
Many, many years ago I was praying about a particular situation and I was becoming more and more frustrated, as it felt that heaven was closed and God was just not listening.
One day I cried out in desperation demanding an answer or if not a reason why I was not hearing from heaven. The Holy Spirit answered, “You will receive an answer when you are willing to except the answer I give you and not what you have already decided on and are expecting me to agree with.”
I was shocked to say the least, but of course realized the Holy Spirit was exactly right. In my asking I had already determined what I believed to be the outcome and that was the answer I wanted.
The good news is that I said sorry, changed the way I was praying and the very next day the situation was dealt with. The outcome was better than I expected.

God is always in control

We must remember that God is sovereign, HE is in control, HE is the God that does not change (Malachi 3:6). Though we may think that God is preoccupied with our agenda, HE is not. It is for His Kingdom come, His will be done, we pray (Matthew 6:10).

The Lord foils the plans of the nations; he thwarts the purposes of the peoples.
But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations.
Psalms 33:10-11

Joshua, as he begins to lead the people of Israel into their promised inheritance, learnt this valuable lesson early.
Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our enemies?”

“Neither,” he replied, “but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.” Then Joshua fell facedown to the ground in reverence, and asked him, “What message does my Lord have for his servant?”
Joshua 5:13-14

Good listeners

Joshua’s victory came from listening to the Lord’s instructions.
An important aspect of our prayer life is, we must be good listeners. Yes we can come before the throne of grace with boldness (Hebrews 10:19-20), but we must also come with ears to hear what the Spirit is saying. We must practice listening intently because many times the answer comes from the Lord with an instruction to us first.
God answers our prayers. Do not give up or give in, HE will answer you!

Hear my prayer, Lord; listen to my cry for mercy.
When I am in distress, I call to you, because you answer me.
Psalms 86:6-7

When you are crying out for an answer, facing a difficult and challenging situation, there is one thing that I can assure you, HE is faithful, HE will not fail you.

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”
Lamentations 3:22-24

The enemies greatest weapon

The greatest weapon the enemy has against you is discouragement, following fast on the heels of disappointment. Don’t let him win another victory over you. Be strong, put your trust and confidence in the Lord and know HE is still in control of your life. HE has not forsaken you!

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Romans 8:28

When King David was struggling to see through the mist of discouragement he found himself in, as he observed the momentary triumph of the wicked, the answer he sought was found in the presence of the Lord.

When I tried to understand all this, it troubled me deeply till I entered the sanctuary of God; then I understood their final destiny.
Psalms 73:16-17

As I’m writing I can hear playing in the background the music to the old song with the words, “Through it all I’ve learned to trust in Jesus….. I’ve learned to depend on His Word.” Amen!

Praying Bible prayers

The bible assures us that if we ask according to His will, HE will hear and answer us.

And this is the confidence (the assurance, the privilege of boldness) which we have in Him: [we are sure] that if we ask anything (make any request) according to His will (in agreement with His own plan), He listens to and hears us.
And if (since) we [positively] know that He listens to us in whatever we ask, we also know [with settled and absolute knowledge] that we have [granted us as our present possessions] the requests made of Him.
1 John 5:14-15 (Amplified Bible)

For longer than I can remember I have encouraged believers in congregations around the world with this. If you’re not sure what to pray, pray the prayers found in the Bible. Pray Bible prayers and when you reach the end cry out, “me too, in Jesus’ name”.
If our prayer is not being answered then we must stop to consider why.
It might be a timing issue? Are you ready?
I remember pestering my father to teach me to drive and though the law of the land allowed me to drive at the age of 15, he insisted I wait until I was 17. I’m thankful to this day for his wisdom and restraint.
Maybe you are asking wrong?
Yes, I’ve been there, done that. No shame in making a mistake, just don’t keep making the same one. You may need to change what you are praying?
Or you may need to just PUSH?
Pray Until Something Happens. The Bible says that the persistent prayer is the one which brings results.

​ALSO [Jesus] told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to turn coward (faint, lose heart, and give up).
Luke 18:1 (Amplified Bible))
…..The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic in its working].
James 5:16 (Amplified Bible)

What do we do when it seems that our prayer is not answered in the way we believe it should be?
Stay in prayer, look to His Word and have your ears tuned to hear what the Spirit is saying.

He who is able to hear, let him listen to and give heed to what the Spirit says……
Revelation 2:7 (Amplified Bible)