Prayer: Why God Takes A While To Answer When We Pray
Is it right to blame God for unanswered prayer?
Today I would like to speak about spiritual warfare and answer the question, at least in part, about why God does not answer prayer when we cry out to Him in our suffering. It is written,
“ And he said unto me, O Daniel, a man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak unto thee, and stand upright: for unto thee am I now sent. And when he had spoken this word unto me, I stood trembling. Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.”
Spiritual warfare in high places
The truth is, many are stuck behind enemy lines. We are in the middle of a continuing war which began before this creation. Ever heard the phrase, “You haven’t got a prayer?” That’s pretty much sums up our situation if it weren’t for God. This conflict is between God and His angels and Satan and his demons (fallen angels.) We understand very little why this conflict began but we feel its effects daily. In fact, every evil work, every violent act, every atrocity we suffer results from spiritual war in heaven.
Desensitized to spiritual things, we live mostly by our five sense. We live what seems right to our natural minds. Yet, we live in the battle zone of supernatural beings we cannot see, hear, smell, taste or touch. Like a blind and deaf man stumbling into a war zone we are at the mercy of catastrophic events we cannot control.
Disappointment when God does not answer
Many people blame God for their misfortune in their lives. When we feel vulnerable we call upon His name. Since God is all powerful and all knowing, isn’t it reasonable that he rescue us? When God does not show up and bad things happen we feel abandoned and let down. We become bitter and angry, blaming God for our suffering.
We forget, though, that we at war. Depending on where we are in enemy territory it’s not always possible to deliver us from evil. Sometimes, as in the case of Daniel, even archangels such need time to break through enemy lines. In the case of Gabriel, even though God heard him from the very beginning, it took 21 days to answer his prayer.
Sin is more powerful than you might think
The truth is, we grossly underestimate the power of sin. Sin is so potent that God destroyed the entire Earth by flood in order to eradicate it. If God is all powerful and knows everything why did He have to do that? Why couldn’t our heavenly Father make the sons of Adam come round to His way of thinking? It is because once men hearts turn evil it is very difficult to turn them back to good again. Out of an entire generation of people before the flood only eight souls escaped judgement by faith.
In reality, the battle which surges all around us is sometimes so fierce even archangels cannot prevail quickly. It may look like God is missing in action but that is not the case at all. God and His angels are fighting valiantly and being held up by overwhelming demonic forces.
People chose to do evil
God gave mankind free will. Unfortunately, that means people are free to choose evil. When generation after generation chooses sin it builds up until all hell breaks loose. Their comes a time, as with the Canaanite nations, that their cup in inequity is full. Even God cannot bring them out of the pit they dug for themselves. The only solution left to our Father is to wipe the slate clean and start over. In such dark places all manor of evil takes place. These are strongholds of Stand and legions of demons guard them.
Some are unlucky enough to be born into such corrupt and sinful cultures (or even families for that matter.) Innocent souls are at the mercy of the demons that inhabit the people bent on doing evil. Like a special opts mission God has to go covert. Sometimes the mission succeeds but sometimes it does not. When the battle is too strong innocent people suffer terrible losses.
Working hard to answer prayer
God hears when our prayer. Angels constantly work with mankind to bring as many souls to heaven as possible. There is a plan in place that God advances every day to accomplish this herculean feat. Mere mortals cannot comprehend the plans intricacies because it is too complex. All we know is that our pain seems more important than anything else. Yet YHWH has to balance out what we are going through with what everyone else is going through. Sometimes that means that God cannot answer our prayer as fast as we want.
Whom God foreknows He does predestine. Satan and his demons seem to know those chosen for great things. Some unfortunate children suffer terrible treatment and do not know why. Children even assume they must be causing it because it makes no sense. The truth is, though, demons are trying to damage our souls so that we will hate God. Satan wants to prevent us from reaching our full potential. This is one reason why so many Christians tell so many terrible stories about their lives before they met Jesus.
God is really on your side
We are not victims of God’s negligence. God is not responsible for our situations. In fact, God has been doing literally everything possible, including sacrificing His only begotten son in our place, to fix it. Satan is not stupid. Fallen Lucifer did not start this war because he thought it was hopeless. The Devil fights because, in his mind, he thinks he can win. Judging by what happened to the world before the flood, Satan almost did.
Demons inhabit people and do nasty things
When we are young we are sometimes at the mercy of an enemy we cannot begin to fathom. The sheer malevolence of these fallen beings is beyond comprehension. It is these demons that do the evil we suffer. They are responsible for every act or cruelty and hate that we have felt throughout our lives.
Demons hide, in plain sight, within people. They work their evil through the mouths of those we love. Evil spirits hit us through the hands of those we trust and abuse us through people who should love us. Compromised individuals fall so under their control they act like the demons that posses them. Sometimes they literally know not they know not what they do.
The truth is that God does care
We are victims of a colossal lie which seeks to convince us that God does not come to our aid because He does not care. Nothing could be further from the truth. God cares so deeply, so profoundly, that He sacrificed the one person that was truly worthy of His love: Jesus Christ. Our Father gave us everything He could so that we can win this battle and be saved.
Many are hurt, so deeply, that only the love of God can heal their wounds. To become truly whole we need the great physician to touch parts of us that hurt the most. This is where Divine Love through the Body of Christ comes in. Our Father will love us, if we are willing, so completely, through our brethren, that our shattered selves will become one again.
Perhaps you are thinking, “I would not let my brethren touch me with a ten foot pole!” You only say that because you have learned the limitations of man’s love. The Tabernacle experience, however, is God loving through us. We become, in God, vessels for something so powerful it can heal even the deepest wounds. Truly, God’s love never fails.
There is safety in spiritual connections
We, as the Body of Christ, must mature and begin to walk in the Spirit as a unified army. We need to close rank around through who are wounded and battle weary. Like spiritual marines, we need to say “No Saint Left Behind!” This war began in the spirit and so lets finish it in the spirit. As the battle rages, however, we are more than conquers through Christ Jesus who strengthens us. In Jesus name, lift up your sword of the Spirit and lets go do some real damage to the enemy of our souls. Come on Christians, do you want to live forever!
Music and lyrics to “We’re God’s Army” by Michael King