Q: How do I know God even hears my prayers? Sometimes it's as if He's turned a deaf ear to me. I'm beginning to wonder if it's even worthwhile praying. -- Mrs. E.C.
A: One reason we know God hears our prayers is because He has promised to hear them! Even if He doesn't always answer the way we think He should, He still hears us. The Psalmist declared, "As for me, I call to God ... and he hears my voice" (Psalm 55:16-17).
Why then, does God sometimes seem deaf to our prayers? One reason may be because we've allowed sin to take root in our hearts -- and sin always cuts us off from God. It may be anger, or hatred, or prejudice, or an unclean habit, or anything else that we've allowed to pollute our souls. This is why we need to make sure we've given our lives to Jesus Christ, because He came into the world to cleanse us of our sins. Have you given your life to Him?
Often, however, God doesn't answer our prayers the way we think He should because He loves us, and He knows what is best for us. It's often been said that God answers prayer in one of three ways: "Yes", "No", and "Wait" -- and it's true. We see only part of the picture -- but God sees the whole. This is why we must seek God's will when we pray, and not just our own. The Bible says, "This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will ... we have what we asked of him" (1 John 5:14-15).
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Don't be discouraged. Instead, thank God for His love for you, and learn to commit everything to Him in prayer. The Bible says, "Rejoice always, pray continually" (1 Thessalonians 5:16-17).
(Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.)(c)2018 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.