Over the past few weeks, I have offered suggestions on how you can know that God is listening to your prayers and working in your life. I suggested that you look for positive changes (things get a little better), negative changes (things get really bad) or attitude changes (nothing changes externally, but you feel hopeful). Given that wide range of options, however, it is entirely possible that despite your fervent prayers, you may not see any changes or feel more hopeful. Could this be the dreaded exception to the rule?
Fortunately for us, there is no way to prevent God from hearing our prayers. He hears us whenever we pray. There are no exceptions. The Bible supports this theory, as evidenced by the Lord?s words to the prophet Jeremiah:
?Then you will call upon me and come to pray to me and I will hear you.? (Jeremiah 29:12, emphasis mine)
That?s all well and good, but hearing and responding are two different things. Even if God hears our prayers, how do we know He is responding to them? To put it simply, we can be sure that God hears our prayers because Jesus said so!
?Ask, and it will be given you; seek and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.? (Matthew 7:7-8, emphasis mine)
While it is true that you may not get what you want when you want it, you will always receive an answer when you pray. Jesus said it and you can take it to the bank. Therefore, even if it appears that your prayers aren?t being answered, you can fall back on the inspired word of God for assurance. Don?t be swayed by your feelings or an apparent lack of response. When you pray, God hears you and will answer in some way when the time is right. Learning to recognize His presence in your life takes time and practice. Don?t give up. Keep praying with expectant hope. You will not be disappointed!
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