Lizada: Prayer

Often it is said that there are three answers to prayer. Yes, No and Not Yet. There is another. But let us look at the first three.

Yes. No problem with that. We pray for something or someone and we get it or get him or her. No problem, we are happy and grateful. We move on and look for something else to pray for.

No. No and we say perhaps it was not meant for us. And we say to ourselves or to others, it was not meant to be or that most famous of all lines, “there is a reason for everything.” Somehow that appeases us temporarily. But then again there might be a grumbling in our hearts and we are left wondering why it was not granted. That could be anything, a job, a medical condition, a promotion, a spouse( yes people pray for spouses), an opportunity. Anything. And we are where we started, “ there is a reason for everything.”

Not yet. The lesson is wait, be patient. If it is meant to be, it will be. Or if it is meant for you, it will not pass you by. It or he or she will find you. The only thing we have to do is wait. But a lot of us cannot wait.

We want it right away like instant noodles or Netflix and when we do not get it we complain and start complaining to God and asking, kelan Lord? I can see God smiling. Amused at our reactions. A lot of us like to control God. Most amusing and terrifying.

Yes, No and not yet — all these we have heard and experienced. But there is a fourth answer. And that is the most simple and therefore the most profound and naturally we miss it entirely. The fourth answer is God. God is the answer.

When we grapple with something or we are faced with the unimaginable, we pray like we have never prayed before. Suddenly everything that we thought was important falls along the wayside of things.

Suddenly we are looking at something in its stark nakedness and power and we are powerless in its reality. We get stuck, nay, paralyzed. And we fall on our knees and we pray like we have never prayed before.

We ask for a Yes, we demand a Yes for all our prayers. A No is not acceptable and a Not Yet is something we cannot wait for. It has to be done, it has to be granted, there is no other option. We demand a Yes to our pleas. But as we all know not all is given or granted. Sometimes there are Nos that can be devastating or beyond belief. And we find ourselves listening or telling others, “there is a reason for everything.” It may not be the answer we want but it is the only answer we have. But no. There is that fourth reason. God himself. God himself is the answer.

God as the answer means He is enough to see us through. God is more than enough. God is not a yes or a no or a not yet. God is God. Whatever we face, whatever we ask, God is enough. Difficult? Of course.

Untested faith is not faith after all. During Holy Week step into the darkness of Good Friday and wait. If we have enough faith we will see the Easter dawn. And it will not matter if it is a Yes, No or Not Yet because God is the answer.


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