Sometimes God Doesn’t

One of the most difficult realities of being a Christian is that sometimes God doesn’t answer prayers. Even though we do our best to convince ourselves that he always answers, “just sometimes in silence,” I just don’t think it’s true. I guess we could debate this and have a “one-handed clap” or “tree falling in the woods” kind of discussion – but sometimes silence is just . . . silence. It doesn’t mean that he’s not there. It doesn’t mean that he stopped caring or that he gave up on you. It just means sometimes he doesn’t answer.

Sometimes I get upset about this. Sometimes I even get mad. Part of my problem is that I try to write God’s job description for him. I know it’s silly. I know it doesn’t make sense. But sometimes the silence is so scary, and even painful, that I can’t help but try to fill it with noise. Any noise will do, even if it really hurts my ears. I just don’t want to hear the silence anymore. Even as I sit here typing, I am waiting for God to answer.

I’ll never stop waiting. It’s in my nature. I’ll ask, and then I’ll wait. But I’ve learned through many tears to sit still while I wait . . . to sit still and listen. Because sometimes, if I am quiet and still long enough, though I still may not see an answer, I just might be able to hear His whisper as it cuts through my pain and soothes my heart, “I Will Always Love You.”