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Unanswered Prayers
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Photo: Anita Patterson Peppers
The job was an answer to my prayers. Work I loved doing coupled with a big raise—tripling my salary. I had been interviewed. The group where I would be working was excited about having me join. The hiring manager wanted me.  All that remained was to get the formal offer from the company, and accept it. The offer never came.

My file got lost on the way to personnel. It was re-sent. The recruiter working with me at the placement agency suddenly quit, so I was never told to call the personnel department. The hiring manager tried to kick-start the hiring process directly, since the agency lost interest in me. The company’s legal department had to look at that, just to make sure. They finished just after a hiring freeze started.

A small series of missed connections and my dream job disappeared.

At the time, while disappointed—who wouldn’t be?—I was not distressed. A friend told me I should have prayed for God’s help.

“I did,” I replied. “I prayed for God to help me in my job search.”

“It sounds like He decided not to answer.”

“He did,” I stated. “It was not the answer I hoped to hear, but He did answer.”

Prayers are always answered. God’s plans are not always our plans, however. Notice, I did not pray for God to get me that job. I asked Him to help me in my job search. Considering the coincidences that cost me the position, I thought He made His will plain. It was not the job for me. I did not then understand why, but I accepted His judgment, and moved on.

We call God the Father because we are His children. Like every good parent, He sacrifices for His children. Sacrifices do not come bigger than the one Christ made for all of us.

When Children Ask for Foolish Things

Good parents do not give their children everything for which they ask. When children ask for foolish things, you still listen, but you either say no, or substitute something more appropriate. Sometimes you test them. Often your children are unappreciative.

When God hears our prayers, with His infinite wisdom, He gives us what is truly needful, not for a temporary life on Earth, but to help us complete our application to join His celestial host. That is where we want to end up.

No request from my children was more gratifying than when they asked for advice and guidance. It showed their trust in me. They knew my judgment as an adult was better than theirs as children. When I pray, I try to ask God for advice and guidance, not things. If my judgment as an adult is better than those of children, how much better and wiser must His judgment be than mine? I do not always get what I hoped for, but I get what I need.

As for the job I failed to get? Eighteen months later, that company got caught by the Enron scandal. It went out of business.

"For we walk by faith, not by sight" (2 Corinthians 5:7).

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Written by Mark N. Lardas, copyright 2007, Mark N. Lardas, all rights reserved.  Copyright © 2007 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW KING JAMES VERSION © 1982.


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