Prayer: Still Talking to God, No Matter His Answer.
In C.S. Lewis’ The Magician’s Nephew, the Lion, Aslan, sends a young boy, Diggory and his friend, Polly, on a mission. They find themselves hungry and without food when they set up camp for the night. Diggory and Polly discuss their need for food, not grass, with the flying horse, Fledge, that is carrying them through and beyond Narnia.
“Wouldn’t he know without being asked?’ said Polly. ‘I’ve no doubt he would,’ said the Horse (still with his mouth full). ‘But I’ve a sort of an idea he likes to be asked.”
Our Creator is not much different. Our Father in Heaven knows our needs before we ask (Matthew 6:9). Not only does He know our needs, His Spirit guides us and intercedes for us when we don’t know how to pray (Romans 8:26-28). Jesus told his disciples to “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7). How, then, can we expect something if we don’t first ask for it, then seek God’s will for our lives?
I do not know how all my prayers will be answered. Even now, I am facing a disappointment in a prayer answered with “no”. Whether that no is a “not yet” or “not ever” or something else is also unknown to me. What I do know is that God has a great plan for my life, that He loves me enough to send His Son as an atoning sacrifice for my sin, than His love is not conditional. In times like this, I take refuge in the words God spoke to the prophet Jeremiah: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:11-13).