Unaswered Prayers

Nick MartineauBlog

In the early 90’s, country singer Garth Brooks released a song that got everyone thinking about prayer. Garth sang about a time when he and his wife ran into his former high school girlfriend. Garth recalls praying to God in high school, asking that this girl would become his wife; now he thanks God for not answering his high school prayer. The chorus of Garth’s song, titled Unanswered Prayers, goes like this:

Sometimes I thank God for unanswered prayers

Remember when you’re talkin’ to the man upstairs

That just because he doesn’t answer doesn’t mean he don’t care

Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers

After Garth released this song, it took off. It’s one of his most popular songs to date, and in 1991 it hit #1 on Billboard’s top Country chart. People all across our country were singing about unanswered prayers and thanking God for His silence. 

I was one of those people that sang along with Garth’s top hit, and it wasn’t until a few years later that I realized that Garth Brooks isn’t much of a theologian.  While Garth’s intentions are probably good, I would disagree with his insinuation that our prayers go unanswered. Sometimes when we pray and make requests before God, we don’t get what we desire and chalk it up to, “I guess it wasn’t meant to be,” or “Looks like God is being silent on this one.

Yet, I don’t think God is mute. I believe God fully intends to communicate His intentions with us. It may not be with the outcome you desire, in the way you desire, or with the timing you desire, but you can be assured that your requests have been heard and have been answered.

All throughout scripture we see that when we seek God, we will find God, and we see that He is capable of all things! So, we can then be assured that our prayers have been heard and answered, and we are wise to trust that He is doing what is best for us…whether we received our desired requests or not.

I’ve taken the liberty to rewrite Garth’s 1991 top hit. Not sure if he’s up for changing the lyrics, and he might have to pick up the pace to make it flow a little better, but I think this is more accurate to how our prayer life works:

Sometimes I thank God for ANSWERED prayers

Remember when you’re talkin’ to the man upstairs

That just because he doesn’t answer (the way that you want Him too)

doesn’t mean he don’t care

Some of God’s greatest gifts are ANSWERED prayers

Peace,

Nick