Have you ever prayed to God and received an answer different than you wanted? If you’ve known the Lord any length of time, the answer to my question is yes. We all go through times when we don’t get the answer we want.
I remember when I was growing up there was a woman in our church who said her washing machine was broken beyond repair. She prayed for a new washing machine. When a member of the church stepped up and offered her a used washing machine in good condition she turned it down because she said she had prayed for a new washing machine. I remember thinking, “Well, that one would be new to you.”
Sometimes when we pray and ask the Lord for something, His answer comes in the form of a request. In 2 Kings 4:1-7, a woman came to Elisha crying out in desperation for God to step into her crisis. Her husband was dead, she owed money to creditors and they were going to take her children as slaves to settle her debt. She didn’t know what to do. God called her and her children into action. They were to take the little they had, oil, and put it to work. Not only did she have to solicit the assistance of her children, but she had to ask her neighbors to get involved. While it seemed like an unusual request, she immediately responded to the Lord’s direction. She did her part.. My Daddy used to always say, “God feeds the sparrows, but He doesn’t throw the worms in the nest.”
Naaman was like the woman with the washing machine. The answer to his dilemma didn’t come the way he expected it to come, so he baulked at it [2 Kings 5:1-11]. He was willing to throw away a blessing because it didn’t come wrapped up or presented in the way he expected. God clearly tell us His thoughts are not our thoughts nor are His ways our ways [Isaiah 55:8]. We must trust Him and respond to His requests, no matter how unusual they may seem to us. It is through obedience we are blessed.
What has the Lord asked you to do today? Have you responded? Immediately? Or are you dragging your feet like Naaman, arguing with the Lord’s answer to your prayers? Slow obedience is still disobedience. We could all learn to follow widow’s response to God’s request. She acted and she acted immediately. What will you do?
Great post, Susan! I’ve found this to be true in many areas of my life, from raising my children to our work in Ghana. Obedience to God always leads to blessing!
I’m going to be heading to Ghana in the summer of 2013. Would love it if we had a chance to meet face to face. I’ll keep you posted. BLESSINGS!