Certain Answered Prayers

And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. – Isaiah 65:24

God will hear the cry of your desire, but the hand into which He will put the mercy is the hand of your expectation. You must believe that you have the blessing, or you will not have it unless it be by some extraordinary mercy beyond what is promised. His usual way is to raise our expectations so that we look out for the favour, and then He sends it. If some people looked out for answers to prayer they might soon have them, for their prayers would be answered by themselves. I was reminded of that by a little boy whose father prayed in the family that the Lord would visit the poor and relieve their wants. When he had finished, his little boy said, “Father, I wish I had your money.” “Why so?” “Because,” he said, “I would answer your prayers for you.” “Which prayers, John?” “Why, father, you prayed that the poor might be helped, and you could do it very well with your own money.” I like better still that story of the good man at the prayer-meeting, who reading the list of prayers found one for a poor widow that her distress might be relieved, so he began to read it, but stopped and added, “we won’t trouble the Lord with that, I will attend to that myself.” Numbers of prayers are of that kind: we are praying God to do what we ought to do ourselves, and that is sheer impertinence. If we really prayed in earnest, expecting to be heard, our answer would often come in this very way, by our being stirred up to see that the Lord had heard us. The Lord might well say to us, “Thou sayest, Thy kingdom come; arise and help to make My kingdom come! Thou askest that My name may be hallowed; go thyself and hallow My name.” Oh, that we had the expectancy which would teach us practical action, so that we should find the answer to our prayer given before we asked, according to the promise, “Before they call I will answer them, and while they are yet speaking I will hear.” ~ C.H. Spurgeon


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