No prayer goes unanswered

We take it for granted that God listens to us when we pray, right? Of course he listens. But John takes us one step further, because in 1 John 5:15 do we take it for granted just as much that “whatever we ask, we know that we have what we asked of him”? Or as other Bible translations phrase it, “what we asked for is as good as ours,” or “is already ours.”

John is saying that God has set things up so that whatever we ask for he’ll answer us every time. God’s even put himself on the spot where he HAS to answer too, because it was he who gave us the Spirit and the Spirit is now stirring us to pray to him, so how can God resist himself?!

And what if the Spirit is stirring us to pray about things that God just loves hearing his children pray about, like helping a friend (or an enemy) in need? Thanks to the Spirit we’re constantly thinking of others and what’s best for them. The Spirit has created that love in us, love which then stirs us to pray for others, asking God to do for them what we cannot do but deeply wish we could. But that was exactly what God sent the Spirit to create in us, so that when we pray we’re asking in love for the right and good things for others.

And that puts God on the spot, because it was he who gave us that love in the first place, and now he’s faced with us praying in love, love that HE created, which he knew would make us pray to him for help. Is he now going to stop there and not complete the circle? We’re praying, and we’re praying with the mind of the Spirit, so for God not to answer now would be going against what he himself put in place. It’s like a Dad telling his child, “If you have anything you need, son, just ask,” so that’s what the child does, he asks, but all he gets back from Dad is, “Well done, son, you asked” – and he leaves it at that!

What Dad has got on his hands now is one frustrated son, because what’s the point of asking Dad for anything if Dad doesn’t answer? And God faces the same frustration from us too if he doesn’t answer us. So he assures us that not only does he hear every word we pray, he ALSO goes to work on it to make it happen. It may take time, but never will God frustrate HIS children with no answer at all.

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