ANSWERED PRAYERS AND MIRACLES … IN HIS TIME
By Paul Marcelo, BCBP Pasay
Trusting God reminds me of a story of two women, Sarah and Hannah. Abraham’s wife, Sarah, prayed for a child. She held on to God’s promise, so she waited. A year came, then two. After about twenty years of waiting, she said enough. Out of frustration and impatience, she took it upon herself to make things work out in her own way, in her own timeline, by her own terms. She decided to stop waiting on God. By her own capacity, she pushed things to get her wish. She did have the baby she longed for, but not in God’s plan. The baby boy she had through Hagar was not a blessing after all (Gen 21:9-10).
However, despite Sarah’s impatience and unfaithfulness, God fulfilled his promise. In her old age, she became pregnant with Isaac.
The other woman in Scriptures who also cried out to God for a child was Hannah. But unlike Sarah, she never gave up on God. After pouring her heart out to God, she trusted Him (1 Samuel 1:6-16). Her wait was spent with prayers and worship. In the end, she got what she wished for in a form of a bouncing baby boy, Samuel. Her wish was granted without her intervention.
We also have a sister who, like Sarah and Hannah, prayed for years to God for a particular petition. She prayed for the Christian renewal of her husband. Often, frustration got into her but she never used coercion or force. She trusted on the Holy Spirit to make the change. Every night, in his sleep, she placed her hands over his head and prayed-over him. After endless years of this nightly ritual, the husband, in his deathbed of fighting cancer, called for a priest for confession and anointing. The fulfillment of her prayer unfolded before her eyes. Her husband departed peacefully and reconciled with God.
It is easy for BCBP members to trust God. We delight in hearing miracles and stories that have happy endings. We hear about a child who was healed when a group prayed in faith, the money God provided during a shortfall, or relationships reconciled when they trusted God.
But we should also understand the people who have been through tough circumstances and have never seen a miracle so they find it so difficult to trust God. In Scriptures, we find many people who doubted. People like Elijah, Gideon, and Thomas who trusted God in the past and witnessed God’s miracles but still found it difficult to trust Him during difficult times.
Do you have a petition that has not been answered yet? Are you in despair and suffering now and feel that God is taking way too long to answer?
Like Sarah, Elijah, Gideon, Thomas, it’s easy to doubt and lose faith. But my challenge is: Be a Hannah.
Pour out your heart to God. Tell Him your needs and fears. Then trust Him. Let the miracle happen. Be assured that God finds pleasure in granting gifts. To protect us, he will not grant anything that will harm us. Unanswered prayers are in fact blessings.
Isn’t it true that when God withholds something, it means He is preparing us for something better? Recall your spiritual experiences. The evidence of God’s work in our lives is too compelling to ignore.
Resist the urge to make “shortcuts” in the guise of “helping” God by taking things into your own hands. Do what you can to help but do not play God. Do not open a door that God wants to remain closed.
If you think you know better than Him, then stop.
Things will happen… in HIS TIME.