“God always has three answers to our prayers:
- Not now
Keep praying. Stay patient. He is working everything out for your own good.”
No, he does not, or at least not like how we think.
Not even close.
If you read my book, God Is In the Doubt, you’d know that I firmly believe God placed desires in my heart which would never come true in order to set me on a path. God does not have a plan to grant us our wishes. He has a plan to achieve his purposes. Sometimes we get what we want along the way, sometimes we do not. Some people get much more than they could ever dream. Then there are those of us who get very little. No matter what he blessed you with, or not, it is according to his purpose.
The Bible says he works everything for good. It does not say I will think it is good.
I used to believe a variation of this false “faith” in God’s provision. I thought he would allow us to have many, but maybe not all, of the basic innocent desires, like family, children, health, food, and shelter. Jesus healed the lame, and God provided food and shelter to the sparrows and to prophets and to all of Israel for forty years. The Bible is full of families with many children prospering under God’s blessing while they served him.
In my book, I detail trials maintaining food and shelter, but God provided. For many years, we had reasonable health. However, when children started coming, tragedies occurred repeatedly. I started thinking this was the one area God would not let me have. Then he took that away, and much more in spades.
I do not believe this simplistic view now.
Yes, those three answers are options, but I don’t think this is all of his options. Sometimes he is building a freeway to his plan, and it goes right through the middle of our life. Sometimes our life is beaten down and made hard to be a part of the roadway for people to come to know him. He placed desires within me to move me to the center of multiple freeways converging, holding a spaghetti junction. His answer to me is not yes, no, or wait for it, but endure, because this is where he wants me.
Endure the pain.
Endure the losses.
Endure the grief.
Endure the suffering.
Endure the desires.
Endure the questions.
Endure the guilt.
Just wait for my return.