Yes, No, or Wait…

Matthew 7:7, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”

The other day I sat in the stands at a ballgame and found myself simply listening to the noises around me. Voices cheering; voices protesting; voices communicating; voices announcing; voices selling and buying; they ran together and blended to the point that I could not distinguish one voice from another. As I looked around, I realized the people filling the stadium seats were minuscule compared to the number of people in the world. I imagined the prayers of people floating up to our Heavenly Father; pleas for mercy; requests for forgiveness; cries for help; praise and thankfulness; and somehow, He hears them all.

I’m often asked if I believe God answers prayer. I know He does – not always in the way we wish He would answer and not always in the time frame we’ve chosen. Sometimes He says, “No” to our requests. We may understand later why He answered No or we may never understand. Sometimes He answers, “Yes!” It may take a while or it may be a quick answer. At other times, He has us “wait.” In waiting, He delivers an answer that usually makes more sense to us.

Garth Brooks wrote a song called “Unanswered Prayers.” He says, “Sometimes I thank God for unanswered prayer. Remember when you are talking with the man upstairs. Just because He doesn’t answer, doesn’t mean He don’t care. Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers.”

I’ve also experienced times when waiting was the answer. It seemed difficult to understand until when the answer was delivered, I realized if it had happened when I wanted it to happen, the outcome would not have been the same.

And then there are the wonderful times when we ask, and God answers just as we asked or maybe even better than we expected. Sometimes, He can answer our prayers beyond our wildest imaginations.

We serve a God who can hear all those voices as if He is listening one-on-one at the altar. We serve a God who can give one man a word to deliver to 1000 people and every one of those people hear a personal message, spoken directly to them. We serve a God who wants good for our lives.  I don’t know how He does it, but then again, if I knew, He wouldn’t be God, now would He?

Today, as you spend time in prayer with God, thank Him that He hears your requests. Rejoice in His power and might. Know that He hears your heart and knows what is best for you.


Sometimes it is hard to connect with people, even with all the means of communication we have today. We play phone tag with one another; our email inboxes are overflowing; voicemail is full; and texts fill our phones. The latest form of contact with teenagers is the “snap chat.” No words, just a photograph of what one person is doing at a particular time. My assistant has a tough job making sure I return all the calls I missed, answer my emails and texts, and see everyone I need to see. Often, my limitations make getting everything done extremely difficult. And, occasionally, there are times when I put up a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign to keep people out of my life momentarily. Projects have to be completed, and I have no choice but to spend the necessary time to get things done. Isn’t it wonderful that our God never has those problems? He never puts up a sign saying “Do Not Disturb.”

Matthew 7:7, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”

Mark 11:24, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

John 15:7, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.”

Philippians 4:6, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

Do you see a common thread in these scriptures? God is telling us to ask Him for help. He doesn’t limit our time. He doesn’t say, “I, the Lord your God, will be available Monday and Wednesday from 9:00am to 5:30pm; Tuesday and Thursday from Noon to Midnight; Friday 8:00am to 1:30pm; Sundays CLOSED and Saturdays…”

There have been nights, I have climbed out of bed at 3:00am to pray to Him. He didn’t put me on hold. I didn’t need to leave a voicemail. I didn’t get a ‘sorry, on vacation’ notice. When my knees hit the floor, God was available to me. God does not hang a “DO NOT DISTURB” sign; He is always ready to hear our requests.

Hebrews 4:16, “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”  Today I challenge you to cry out to God.  He will hear and answer your cry.