I pray to the Lord every night about some of my hardships, but it seems as if my cries for help are never answered. I know this may sound childish, but how can I get my prayers to work?
I have been where you are - more than once. I have come to know that God, the Lord always answers prayers in one of four ways:
- Not now
- I have something better for you
- This prayer is not the best for your salvation
- “I” ( God or Lord) would have bestowed this prayer even without a plea
I have been experienced all four of these answers and 1 - 3 are not easy. When one prayers one is asked to place our petition before Him and then let go. Do I suggest this is simple? No! It is very hard and only gives comfort when one jousts prayers more and trusts!
Promise to pray for you.
Very good answer, especially the not easy part.
There was a good discussion on prayer a while back on the Kresta in the Afternoon radio show. I think this might be the MP3 from back in Oct. 7, 2010.
St. Therese of Lisieux and other saints believed we should approach God like a child would. So, do not lose a childlike manner. I would say pray in a way that draws you closer to God. So, if you can pray and “let it go” and that brings you closer to Him, good. However, if pleading and begging works to draw you closer, do that instead. The Scriptures seem to imply both ways are fine. For example, there are numerous Psalms pleading to God for deliverance and many that seem to show a more controlled confidence. I highly recommend reading the Psalms. I know that more than one should speak to you.
Also, meditate on the parable of the widow and the unrighteous judge of Luke 18:1-8. Here it is.
"Then he told them a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary. He said, “There was a judge in a certain town who neither feared God nor respected any human being. And a widow in that town used to come to him and say, ‘Render a just decision for me against my adversary.’ For a long time the judge was unwilling, but eventually he thought, ‘While it is true that I neither fear God nor respect any human being, because this widow keeps bothering me I shall deliver a just decision for her lest she finally come and strike me.’” The Lord said, “Pay attention to what the dishonest judge says. Will not God then secure the rights of his chosen ones who call out to him day and night? Will he be slow to answer them? I tell you, he will see to it that justice is done for them speedily. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”
Also, reflect on 1 Pet. 5:7 which says “Cast all your worries upon him because he cares for you.”
I personally take comfort in both of these and I hope you will, too. In your asking, let God know that you prefer His will to your own and that you are willing to wait indefinitely if He so determines it is best. Just keeping praying and trusting that God will answer you in the *best *way.