We’ve all been there. Prayed for something our hearts were craving, desiring, and even crying out for and the answer from God was no. I am currently living with my 2 year old granddaughter who gave me a great lesson in this (and many other things) just the other day.
Remember, two year olds can set their hearts on the smallest of things. It is all about what they want in that moment. And as often happens, here at our house, the answer of no was met with a full out temper tantrum. Pure, honest emotion of disappointment mixed with a healthy dose of manipulation to get the one in charge to change her mind so that the two year old will receive what she/he requested.
Warning Against Worldliness
What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. (James 4:1-3 ESV)
Ahhh the terrible twos. It builds patience in the responsible adult, but all too often it speaks truth to our own adult heart attitudes. We may not lay down on the floor kicking and screaming, but most often we do sulk in disappointment allowing Satan to steal our joy when, what God has said no to, is most probably for our own good.
I mean seriously, when have you ever seen a two year old answer back with “ok mom” and go on to something else? This response is only the result of years of training and relationship building for the child to understand that the parent is making the best long term choice for them. It is a trust response!
Do you trust your heavenly Father when the answer is no? Have you set your heart too deeply on something besides God?
And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. (Hebrews 11:6 ESV)
Our current study in Revelation is teaching me that idol worship is a game changer for eternity and something from which we MUST be vigilant to identify and repent. Putting our hopes and dreams on earthly things. Trusting in our own abilities, bank account, or our government. Living a life that is focused on me and my dreams rather than on God and His Kingdom and righteousness. These and many others are some of America’s culture of idol worship. These are the smallest of things in God’s eyes.
Don’t trade in your eternity for anything this earth has to offer. It just isn’t worth it. Set your eyes on God the Father and what He desires from you so that He will lift you up to the truly abundant life here and in the resurrected life to come. He will change your dreams into something much better. I promise!
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything ACCORDING TO HIS WILL he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. (1 John 5:13-15 ESV)
So learn how to rejoice when God says No. Learn how to thank Him for the trials you are facing. Learn how to see and cooperate with the work that His Holy Spirit is doing in your life. Stop allowing Satan to steal your joy. Rejoice in the Lord, always, and again I say Rejoice! Be encouraged. Press on!
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:4-7 ESV)