Does God Answer Prayers?
by Vicki GRECH
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Does God Answer Prayers?
According to the Bible and my own life experiences, yes, God does in-deed answer our Prayers. The most profound example I have found in the Bible with regard to God answering our Prayers is found in 1 Samuel.
It begins with a man named Elkanah he had two wives. One named Hannah, and the other Peninnah and Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children. 1Sa 1:2
Her husband loved and favoured Hannah more-so than Peninnah. 1Sa 1:5
One day her husband came home to find Hannah weeping. Elkanah, her husband said to her, “Hannah, why do you weep so and do not eat? Why is thy heart grieved so much? 1Sa 1:8
So Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Eli the priest sat upon a seat by a post of the temple of the LORD. She was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore. 1Sa 1:9-10
And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, will you look upon your handmaid and give me a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life. 1Sa 1:11
Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, because I have asked him of the LORD. 1Sa 1:20
Her husband being aware of the vow his wife had made, he and all his house, went up to offer unto the LORD the yearly sacrifice, and his vow. 1Sa 1:21
But Hannah did not; she said to her husband, I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the LORD, and there abide for ever. 1Sa 1:22
I wondered after I read this story just how many people really do know how to “ask” the Lord our God for something. I have heard many simply say; “oh God, please, I want a child”, or something else that may be lacking in their lives. Many it seems do not make any sort of “offering” to the Lord in return. I found it quite odd really, because in our everyday lives when we ask for something from anyone, we usually offer something in return.
I wonder why then it is, that many feel they do not need to make an offer of some kind to God also. For example, if we want to join the local Club, we pay a fee to join and become a Member. Why shouldn’t the same be expected when wanting to have God do something for us. Shouldn’t He be right-full in “asking” us to join His flock and become “Members” of His Kingdom? Children of God.
I remember well my first “pact” or “vow” I made with God. I was 39 and heavily pregnant with my fifth child. A month or so prior to her birth I had noticed a sudden change in her movements, that had all but ceased. Concerned, I spoke to my Dr about this. He was far less concerned about it despite my pleas and he sent me home regardless.
I knew in my heart something was so terribly wrong. Naturally, being raised a devout and faith-full Christian, I knew my only hope for my daughter’s survival would rest with God. I needed no ultrasound technology to tell me she was a girl, I simply knew in my heart the sex of my unborn baby.
I began Praying reverently, almost constantly day and night. I would even wake throughout the night and Pray even then! I too, as Hannah, made a “vow” to God. However, mine was slightly different, but in principle, much the same. I told God that; “if He could grace my child with His love and mercy to “breathe” for her, I would do anything He asked of me”. In a way, I sort of offered myself to God as really, I hadn’t even thought of offering my unborn daughter at that point in time.
A few weeks later, my Dr finally became duly concerned and had informed me my baby was almost, if not already dead in the womb. He ordered an ultrasound immediately and told me the baby would have to be born that day! I didn’t get through a full ultrasound, but rather I was informed I had been in labour for weeks! The Dr told me; “I am sorry, it is too late, there is no heartbeat and it appears the baby is not breathing”.
I stood by God as I knew God had stood by His Word; “Ask in my Name and thou shalt receive”. I promptly and firmly reiterated to the Dr this baby of mine was alive and breathing. At my persistence, (almost demand), a C-Section was done within the next 10 minutes to follow. My little girl was born, apart from laborious and difficult breathing she was healthy in all other aspects. She had spent 4 weeks in a humicrib in intensive care and finally came home after 5 weeks.
God had come through “so 2 speak” and made good on His Promise, as I did mine also. When my little girl was around 3 months of age, I offered her too up unto God to be a Child of God as He called upon her also. I took her on top of the mountain overlooking the lake where we had lived for 2 decades, and Prayerfully committed her spirit unto Him. A decade later I Christened her in the Catholic Faith when she was 10 years old.In the following few weeks my husband and I had renewed our Marriage Vows and had them Blessed by Father Rick, our local Priest.
My story is similar to that of Hannah, a Biblical account of a woman’s commitment to God in exchange” for a male child she so desperately sought to have. God had answered her Prayer as He had done mine. Myself as Hannah, I offered and my child to God as He called upon me to do so as I did myself some time earlier before her birth.
Perhaps this is the “Key” to having Prayers answered. After all, if we want God to answer our Prayers, especially of such magnitude, shouldn’t we at least offer Him our own Soul in exchange of some-sort? I have given this much thought over the years and have reasoned to the conclusion that - “if one wishes to gain from God’s Kingdom, then truly one must have to be a Subject (Servant), of it”. Maybe this is what so many forget, and why God seemingly does not answer their Prayers. I cannot of course say for sure, however, it does seem a plausible theory.
I believe that, when a person’s heart is truly in the Kingdom of God, so gifts and Blessings are in abundance to come out of it and into one‘s life.
As the Lord’s Prayer clearly tells us - “Hallowed, be thy Name, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven”. Yet so few seem to grasp the true concept and nature of this Prayer that Jesus taught us to Pray. AMEN
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