Here are three great reminders for when God’s answers are not what you wanted.
I don’t have to remind you that God is omniscient, which means, He’s all-knowing. Nothing has ever occurred to God…ever, so when God answers in a way that isn’t pleasing to us or may be nearly the opposite of what we asked for, keep in mind that God’s way are not our ways and His thoughts are not like our thoughts (Isaiah 55:8). His ways are far, far better.
When Jesus was telling His disciples about praying for our needs, He said, “which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone” (Matt 7:9), or “Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent” (Matt 7:10)? Jesus point is, “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him” (Matt 7:11)! What answer God gives you might not be what you hoped for, but what answer God gives you is always best for you (Rom 8:28). That’s because He will “give good things to those who ask him” (Matt 7:11)!
When one of our church members had to go into an assisted-living center because of a broken hip, I went to visit her. I walked in, thinking to myself, “I really want to start a local ministry for the church, somewhere here in town.” So I walked in to the assisted-living center and visited our church member, but then, I got to know the staff, then some of the other residents, but also some of the resident’s family. I got involved in a nursing home ministry on my own…accidentally…and what God brought to me was even better than what I was praying for. At first, it might not seem like it’s what you’ll want, but if you pour yourself into something, it can capture your heart, and then you’ll suddenly develop a passion for it.
Imagine a young child coming up to their parent and asking to play with some scissors…and I mean, adult scissors with a sharp, pointy end. Of course the child doesn’t always know what’s best for them like the parent does, so the parent hands the child a pair of scissors that are shorter, and have round ends, like the ones they use in elementary schools. At first, the child didn’t like the answer, “No,” and the child got something they didn’t want, but they got something that they were better off with.