Why does God sometimes not answer our prayers? Does He not care for us?
First we must establish that God does care for us. How do we know that? Because while we were still sinners Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). God gave up the One who was most precious to Him for our sake when we did not deserve it. This more than proves that He loves us.
A prayer in the Bible God did not answer
Why, then does He not answer all our prayers? Let’s check out a prayer that God did not answer. Jesus did not want to die on the cross. He prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup (the suffering of dying on the cross) from me …” and then He continued “yet not my will, but yours be done.” (Luke 22:42). Although Jesus did not want to die on the cross He did it because it was God’s will for Him to die for our sins . Jesus’ prayer for ‘the cup’ to be removed was not answered. God’s will and unanswered prayer are related.
Answers to prayer
Some Christians believe that God has 3 answers to prayer – ‘yes’, ‘no’ and ‘wait’. But the ‘no’ still troubles us. Why did my dear friend who shared the gospel with me have to die of cancer which spread from breast to liver to lungs and finally to the brain when I and a whole host of others prayed our hearts out for her? I have to admit, though, that throughout her ordeal she was an inspiration and blessing to countless people. The unanswered prayer for her healing resulted in her touching many lives. We always pray against adversity (hard times and suffering) but when our prayers are not answered we may find that all the hard times we went through have strengthened us and made us better able to understand the suffering of others. “The God of all comfort comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God” (2 Corinthians 1:4).
All things work together for our good
Romans 8:28 says: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” This verse teaches us that in and through all things in our lives, God works for our good. However, we must remember that what we think of as good and what God thinks of as good for us may be very different things! And therefore, we must trust that whenever God answers or doesn’t answer our prayers, that God’s answer “yes” or “no” is the very best thing for us.