Does God answer all prayer, no matter what?
Some folks think so.
Some folks think that God picks and chooses which prayers He will answer.
Some folks think He doesn't answer any prayers.
Then there those of us who have read and studied the Bible... we believe that God answers prayers of faith that are based on His will, which is found in His Word.
When I was younger and desperately seeking answers to all things spiritual, I wanted to know if God really answers all prayers.
In my search for a comprehensive study on prayer, I discovered R.A. Torrey's How to Pray. This book is a classic.
Chapter 9, Hindrances to Prayer explains why sometimes, scriptural prayers don't get answered.
- Selfish purpose or wrong motives. James 4:3
- Sin. Isaiah 59:1,2 & Psalm 66:18
- Idols in the heart Ezekial 14:3
- Stinginess. Proverbs 21:13 & Luke 6:38
- Unforgiveness. Mark 11:25
- Wrong relationship between husband and wife. 1 Peter 3:7
- Unbelief. James 1:5-7
Please don't get into condemnation if you prayed for healing and you didn't see results. Or a tragedy occurred even though you prayed that it wouldn't. Maybe you prayed for a loved one to live, but he/she died anyway. These are delicate situations that require a separate discussion about timing, the will of man, spiritual and natural laws and spiritual opposition. For now, don't blame God. Don't beat yourself up. Look to Him for comfort and understanding.
Heavenly Father, thank you that you are not a man that you should lie or the Son of man that you should repent. Your promises are yes and amen. There is no fault in you. Open my eyes to see where I might be missing it. Is it lack of revelation? Fear? Unbelief? Or any of these hindrances to prayer. I am not too ashamed to confess and repent. In fact, doing this will bring me closer to you. There is no condemnation here. I trust that the Holy Spirit will convict and guide me into all truth. In Jesus Name. Amen.