When Prayers Go Unanswered

It can be so hard to pray for something very good and very specific and then feel like God is letting your prayers go unanswered. Or worse, like he is ignoring our prayers altogether. How can we handle feelings of discouragement and frustration when this happens? 

Was Jesus lying when he told us, “Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7)?

Well, no, but prayer is not like a gumball machine in the sky where you put your money in, turn the handle, and collect your prize. It’s more complicated than that.

Snippet from the Show

Lord, help me to know your will and conform my will to yours.


In this week’s show, I encourage you to consider that our prayer petitions need to be in accordance with God’s will, that we must trust in God’s goodness, and that our lives on earth will never be free from suffering. In addition, I invite you to consider 3 things when it seems that your prayers are going unanswered:

1) God might be answering a bigger prayer.

God’s ways are not our ways, and he knows what we need and what is good for us even better than we do. When we pray for something very specific, i our shortsightedness, we might not realize the much better thing God is planning for us in the long run.

2) Important work is done in the waiting.

We may not like it, but when we must wait for God’s answer to our prayers, we are being called to grow in love and trust. We are practicing humility and patience in ways that help us to grow more holy. We are learning to love and trust and know God as he truly is.

3) God never promised us pain-free living.

The world is full of suffering and suffering is an inevitable part of the human experience. God never promised to make us happy in this life, but in the next. He set the example for us first, by suffering and dying on the cross out of love for each of us. If Jesus did not merit a pain-free life, why should we?

I recently recorded an audio version of my newest book, You Are Enough: What Women of the Bible Teach You About Your Mission and Worth. More to come!

Have feedback or an idea to share? Email me! I would love to hear from you!


  • Saturday, November 16, 2019: You Are Enough Retreat at Holy Family Catholic Church in Orlando, FL
  • Saturday, January 11, 2020: You’re Worth It Retreat, St. Michael Church, Exeter, NH
  • Saturday, March 7, 2020: You’re Worth It Retreat at Precious Blood Parish in Jasper, IN
  • Saturday, March 28, 2020: Women’s Conference in Norwich, CT
  • Want me to come to your community to speak or give my retreat, You Are Enough, based on the themes in my newest book? Get all the information here!



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