What If the Answer Is No?

November 13, 2012

My new post is up at dotMagis. 

What if God’s answer to one of our prayers is “no”? We are given this answer at times. Sometimes when we are told “no” we easily accept the answer we are given, because what we are asking for is something that really did not matter that much. Occasionally, though, we find ourselves being told “no” when every part of our being wants the answer to be “yes.” What happens to our relationship with God then? Does our relationship with God completely fall apart? Does our entire relationship with God depend on God answering our prayers?

Jesus did not get the “yes” he begged for with every part of his being: “Let this cup pass away from me” (Matthew 26:39). Jesus knew, though, that his prayer was heard, he knew God could answer his prayer, and he knew his Father would be there with him no matter what. Jesus’ relationship with God the Father did not fall apart when his prayer was not answered, because his relationship with God did not depend on answered prayers.

We are invited into a similar relationship—a relationship with God that trusts that our prayers are heard yet does not demand our prayers be answered. We are invited into a relationship of confidence that God can answer our prayers, yet at the same time, we are invited into a relationship that asks us for complete surrender to God’s way.

To read the rest…..

Becky is an Ignatian-trained spiritual director, retreat facilitator, and writer. She is the author of the Busy Lives and Restless Souls (March 2017, Loyola Press) and The Inner Chapel (April 2020, Loyola Press). She helps others create space to connect faith and everyday life through facilitating retreats and days of reflection, through writing, and through spiritual direction. With nearly twenty years of ministry experience within the Catholic Church, Becky seeks to help others discover God at work in the every day moments of people’s lives by utilizing St. Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises and the many gifts that our Catholic faith and Ignatian Spirituality provide.

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