If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. -John 15:7 (NIV)
There are more tears shed over answered prayers than over unanswered prayers. -St. Teresa de Avila
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. -James 1:2-3 (NKJV)
You, and maybe others who support you, have prayed and prayed for an outcome. And He hears His children.
And that for which you prayed was not self-serving, but to further His kingdom…to amplify His light and glory through the deliverance of the prayer. And He laid the steps to reach the very destination you planned (Proverbs 16:9).
What I keep seeing over and over in Scripture is the consistent pattern I can see God working in my life: Yes, he absolutely hears believing prayer for achieving seemingly unreachable goals, because achievement of them would bring Him greater glory. But the steps to get there may not be a short, straight line. The path may be fraught with pain and possibly disaster.
Stay with me on this one. It gets better.
What I see in my life, and what I’ve seen over and over in Scripture, is that God unfolds His plan in His will and timing. And this plan includes the steps to get from believing prayer to answered prayer. And these steps will have some serious trials and tests of faith and perseverance along the way. These steps may not even make sense to us.
God is not here to hand us worldly comfort, bonbons, and a smooth ride on a silver platter. He does not want jaded, spoiled, self-centered believers who only believe and pray to serve their own wants. No, He is interested in our spiritual refinement and growth, to serve and honor Him in ever greater capacities. And that growth comes through testing. And to honor Him, who loves and hears His children, we follow Him while walking through valleys of fire and desolation.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been brought to my knees recently, then raised up again, stronger than before, to keep going. The enemy whispers to give up and turn around. To be consumed with reactive emotions and self-pity. No.
The more you follow God, the more you thirst for Him…and the more you’re drawn to Him. He strengthens and grows you in Christlikeness. Your walk is ever straighter. And to mock God, the enemy will come at you even harder with every successful step.
Take a breather for a second and look at your life as if it were a storyline in a movie. If you described it up till now to someone, you might be able to see how God is unfolding your path for you.
You prayed—and continue to pray fervently, expectantly, and without ceasing—for a miracle that would glorify Him. It’s clearer with each step that He has answered in the affirmative. He may even drop little hints to encourage you here and there that you’re on the right track.
Don’t get overexcited and try to get there faster (like Abraham and Sarah and Hagar). Don’t get complacent and arrogant (like Samson). Just thank God each step of the way, and to His glory, keep stepping toward the blessings He has ahead for you.
The road ahead to reach your answered prayers will be hard and possibly hazardous, but God will carry you through it, and you are becoming a mighty force for Him as you stay the course.