I have been thinking a lot about prayer lately. MckMama wrote a wonderful post about the same topic a short while ago, and I wholeheartedly agree with her words.
I think a lot people struggle with this topic. People believe some have a direct connection to God. Some believe God does not hear their prayers.
The truth of the matter is God does hear us, and He does answer us. It is when we do not receive the outcome we hoped for that we begin to think God didn't answer. People become angry with God, bitter towards Him for doing the opposite of which they asked.
I know a few people who believe asking a certain person to pray over a situation will result in what is desired. The truth is God does not pick and choose whose prayers He wants to answer. Because God can see the whole picture, He knows what the best outcome is. Asking a certain person to pray is false hope. However, people who are following the will of God and trusting Him will desire what God wants. Therefore, if your desires are the same as God desires, then it will appear that God is answering your prayer. It is a matter of aligning with God's desires. If you ask the Lord to give you His same desires, you will lead a life full of His direction, and you will receive the desires of your heart because you are walking in His way, wanting what He wants.
"Delight yourself in the LORD
and He will give you the desires of your heart."
It's not an easy topic. At times I wonder what the point of praying is when God already knows the outcome. Prayer brings us closer to God. It brings us into communication with Him, allowing us to align with His desires.
If you believe God does not hear your prayers, you are mistaken. God always answers, but we do not always receive the answer we want. If that is the case, we (myself included) have to take a step back and make sure we really want what the Lord wants. He does want us to be happy and live a life full of joy, but we have to remain in Him if we want to desire what He desires for us.
I am still learning this on a daily basis. So many times I just want what I want, not refocusing and saying "Lord, I desire Your will for this situation". It's hard to relinquish control. This is a daily struggle.
We are all free to speak with God anytime we want. We just have to focus on His will and His plan instead of believing He is not listening or doesn't care.
Does this mean we should stop asking God for specific things? Nope! Praying for Stellan, for example, is an act of love and support. It is an act of carrying one another's burdens.
"Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ."
I am always encouraged when I know others have been praying for me.
Additionally, I think there is something to be said about when we do desire as God desires and the outcome is not what we wanted. Again, God sees the whole picture. At the same time, God teaches us and allows us to grow through these situations. We can only think and desire His will to a certain extent because we are humans and have a sinful nature. God is going to do what will bring Himself glory, and sometimes that means pain and suffering.
I am not an expert on prayer, but these are my thoughts and what I believe to be true. God is God. He was, and is, and is to come. He knows the beginning from the end. He is concerned with the details of my life and yours. He cares about the big and little things. So don't cease your prayers. Ask God to give you His desires.