Recently I’ve had a couple of things that I was really praying for. I prayed and waited. Then what I hoped would happen, didn’t. I’m sure you can understand that I was disappointed. It left me with a sadness that I couldn’t shake for a few days.
I understand that my prayers aren’t always lined up with God’s plan. I also know that sometimes what seems like an unanswered prayer is just one that was answered in God’s way, not my own.
During the time of waiting for the answers to these two situations I told God that I just needed this one thing in order to be encouraged and buoyed up again. I thought that if either of these two things came to fruition, it would saturate my dry spirit. Either would put God’s stamp of approval on who I am.
Then, right after the second seeming no answer, an acquaintance stopped me and introduced me to her daughter by saying, “Hey, I’m sorry, I forgot your name, but this is my daughter, Sue.*” In the few minute conversation I learned something about the girl’s choices in life that was breaking her mother’s heart. It was something that even without her saying, I knew this was true.
Still, I walked away feeling even more discouraged. I’ve known this person for about a year and yet she didn’t know my name.
Later, when the daughter wasn’t around the person came to me and said, “Now you know how to pray for me.” I smiled and assured her I would pray for her and her daughter.
She didn’t remember my name, but she remembered that I had spoken of my faith. What seemed like a rude introduction was actually a mom knowing that her daughter needed prayer. She knows that the Bible says, “When two or three are gathered in my name, I am there.” And she knew that I would pray.
My sadness at not having my prayers answered in my fashion has lifted. In that one moment it wasn’t important that she didn’t remember my name, she remembered the essence of who I am and she asked me to intercede for her before God. I thought the encouragement I needed was a pat on the back, but God knew that I needed to be reminded of what’s really important about me. I am a pray-er.
*Names have been changed.