There have been things I’ve asked God for and He didn’t answer the way I had hoped. For instance, for years, I asked Him for a husband, and He said no. At first, I questioned His love for me, but now, I see where being single has freed me up to give myself wholeheartedly to ministry. I have found sweet contentment with where God has me. He knows what’s best for me, and He has a unique purpose for me. Being single has enabled me to carry out that purpose.
When I was on staff with Cru, I prayed for a specific house we wanted to rent. It seemed like the perfect house for me and my roommates – close to the campus, big enough to host ministry activities and dinners, and spread out enough that we would have our private space as roommates. When we didn’t get it, we were devastated. But a few months later, that house flooded during a storm, and the resident’s furniture was ruined. God protected us.
While finishing up at Dallas Seminary, I was praying for God to provide a job for me in Dallas, preferably at my church. I was already involved in the ministry there, and I didn’t want to move away and start all over with new friends and ministry. I interviewed at several churches in the Dallas area, only to face one closed door after another. “God, do you not love me?”
But, then He provided this job in Memphis as the Women’s Ministry Director at my church. And I can honestly say, what a gift! God knew exactly the best fit for me, and First Evan is where I need to be. But if I had gotten my way, I would have missed this blessing. Was it easy to leave sweet friends and my familiar environment? No! But, was it worth it? Absolutely!
God reminds me time and time again that He knows what’s best for me. So, the next time God doesn’t answer my prayer in the way I had hoped, I want to be able to trust His purpose in my life. He sees the big picture; I can’t. He knows what’s around the corner; I don’t. But I know my God, and I can rest in His love and sovereignty.
“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” – Romans 8:28
How have you seen God’s hand at work when He said no to something you wanted and prayed for?