God surely answers prayers, but why is it that our prayers go unanswered at times? Does that mean God isn't listening? Or does that mean that He doesn't love us?
Of course, God listens to us, God loves us, and God answers our prayers. We must know, however, that there are a few things that stop our prayers from being answered, and it's our responsibility to take care of or do these things if we want to receive what we pray for.
Have you ever had unanswered prayers? Have you ever wondered why God doesn't seem to respond? I hope this article helps you.
Here are some things that will stop your prayers from being answered.
- Unconfessed sin
Unconfessed sin will always hinder answers to our prayers. God said in 2 Chronicles 7:14,
"If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land."
Did you know that unforgiveness also hinders the answers to our prayers? How is this? This is related to the aforementioned reason of unconfessed sin. Mark 11:25-26 tells us how.
"And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses."
Jesus always said that if we ask in His name and believe that we will receive, then we will receive. Our own unbelief stops the answers.
"So Jesus answered and said to them, "Assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but also if you say to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' it will be done. And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive."" (Matthew 21:21-22)
- Wrong motives
We can ask for anything and believe we have received it, and still we won't be able to receive it. Why? Because we ask with the wrong motives! James 4:3 is very clear on this:
"You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures."
- You don't ask according to God's will
Now this leads me to my final point. Because we have the wrong motives, we ask according to our own pleasure, not according to God's will. God is not our personal genie, and He is not after our happiness alone – He is after our holiness.
If we want our prayers answered, we must learn to ask according to His will.
"Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him." (1 John 5:14-15)