When God Say No To Our Prayers

Tribute to Walter Payton

A few years ago one of the greatest football players of all time, cialis generic viagra Walter Payton, viagra generic for sale died of a rare liver disease; he was only 45 years old when he passed away. Only a liver transplant would have saved his life.   Along with being a great athlete, Walter Payton was also a terrific individual and an outstanding Christian. He was known as “sweetness”, because of his sincere love for others.  His former coach Mike Ditka said that Walter was the greatest player he ever coached, and the greatest individual he had ever known.   If anyone was deserving of some extra years here on earth, Walter was that person (Matthew 5:45).    His family and friends prayed constantly for him asking God to either miraculously heal him or provide the saving liver organ.    But it was not to be, and even though it was a terrible loss, Walter’s family and friends know that today he is enjoying eternal fellowship with Jesus, Himself.   Did God answer the Payton family prayers?   Perhaps not in the way they had hoped, but God was listening and did answer in a way they may only understand when they later join Walter in heaven. God answers all of our prayers in one of three ways:

  • A  “no” response, as seen with Walter Payton and David {2 Sam. 12:16-18}
  • A “yes” response, as seen with Nehemiah
  • A “wait” response as seen with Simeon (Luke 2:25-28).

The lesson of prayer for your children today deals with the  “No’s” of God. How many times have your children come to you asking for things you cannot give or things you will not give them for their own sakes?   A few years ago my son came to me and desperately wanted to join a particular Colorado soccer team near our home.  I said, “No,” because I had just accepted a job in California and was making preparation to move the family there.    My four-year-old daughter wanted to play in the front yard without restrictions, but when I surmised the traffic danger I said  “No”.    “No’s” are difficult to accept, but it does not mean parents don’t love their children, nor does it mean God does not love each one of us.  He always has our best interest in mind, and He has a specific purpose and plan for us all.   His “No’s are a part of that plan (Jeremiah 29:11-12) The  “No’s” of God are just as purposeful and compassionate as His” Yes’s”.    Life here on earth is just that: life here on earth.   There is an entire  realm of living awaiting each of us if we trust in Him for salvation.  There is a better time ahead, yet there are still many things we can do for Him while we finish our course here on earth.  That requires listening to Him, which may include some purposeful  “No.’s”.  If God says “No” to a request, He either has a better plan ahead or He sees danger coming our way (Deut. 31:8).   Difficult as it may be, we must accept His answer.      It never means He does not love us, quite the opposite. God does not punish us with “No” answers.   In fact, He does not punish His children at all.   He may discipline us when we have faltered.   But discipline is the measure He takes to get us back on the right path

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. Punishment is reserved for the unsaved.    So the “No’s of God get us where we need to go as much as the “Yes’s of God.

Teachable Moment

Pick an entertainment place in your area that would be considered by your children a place they would most love to go.   In my area, that place would have been Disneyland.   Without letting your children know, plan a day there.   But before you go, take them by another activity (a fly by night carnival for example) that is far less spectacular, or one that pales in comparison. This will help them later make a comparison of what they would have missed had they not demonstrated faith in your judgment and plan for the day.     For our family, the monthly makeshift carnivals represented the less spectacular activity.     These carnivals were often quickly set up in a dirt field or a parking lot.   Their operating staffs appeared untrained, unprofessional and a bit grungy at times.    As you put your children in the presence of such a carnival, do not be surprised if they press you to stay and spend your hard earned money there.    Encourage them not to settle for the carnival, but wait and trust your judgment on the matter.   Then just say, “No, I know what is best, trust me on this.”     Then proceed to your final destination (Disneyland for the McClain’s).   Explain to them that this is what God does with us. We should never be discouraged with a” No” answer from God.    In fact, we should be excited.

Teachable Moment # 2

If you have a dog, take her out for a run in the park with the kids.    Make sure you attach a chain to her so that she does not run into passing traffic.   Then unleash your dog and let her play freely. When you are finished, put the chain back on your dog and return home. In your teachable moment at home, ask your children about the need for a chain.    Hopefully, they will say for protection (Psalm 18:2).   And that is another reason why God says  “No” to our requests: for our protection. We should be relieved when He says “No” because He knows what’s ahead for us and wants to protect us. If you don’t have a dog, go to the park with your children and observe a pet owner who is there.  Make the same observations

Word of God

Matt. 5:45 in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on {the} evil and {the} good, and sends rain on {the} righteous and {the} unrighteous.

2 Sam. 12:16 David therefore inquired of God for the child; and David fasted and went and lay all night on the ground.

2 Sam. 12:17 And the elders of his household stood beside him in order to raise him up from the ground, but he was unwilling and would not eat food with them.

2 Sam. 12:18 Then it happened on the seventh day that the child died. And the servants of David were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they said, “Behold, while the child was {still} alive, we spoke to him and he did not listen to our voice. How then can we tell him that the child is dead, since he might do {himself} harm!”

Luke 2:25 And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him. Luke 2:26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.

Luke 2:27 And he came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to carry out for Him the custom of the Law,

Luke 2:28 then he took Him into his arms, and blessed God, and said,

Jer. 29:11 ‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord,’plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.

Jer. 29:12 ‘Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.

Deut. 31:8 “And the Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear, or be dismayed.”

Ps. 34:7 The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, And rescues them.

Ps. 18:2 The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.