“And it came to pass after ten days, that the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah.”
The verse above is a response of the remnant of the people who came to Jeremiah asking him to pray for them so that God would show them the next step they should take. Though we eventually find out that the people really didn’t want to know God’s will, the verse above reveals that God doesn’t always answer the prayer of His people immediately. It is evident that ten days passed before Jeremiah heard anything from God concerning His will for the remnant.
This verse reminds me of one other time in the Scriptures when a man of God didn’t get an immediate answer from God. Daniel prayed for an answer, but it took twenty-one days before the angel of God could get the answer to him. The silence in both of these instances reveals several lessons that could help the believer when it seems that God is silent and their prayer isn’t being answered.
First, silence doesn’t mean that God didn’t hear you. In both of these instances, God heard their prayers immediately, but in both instances, they had to wait before they got the answer. You mustn’t be discouraged when your prayers are not immediately answered. Silence from God in your prayer life doesn’t mean that He is absent from your life.
Second, silence sometimes means delay. In the verse above, God’s silence was to reveal the hypocrisy of the remnant who really didn’t want to know God’s will. Sometimes, God is delaying a prayer from being answered so that He can either grow you or reveal a weakness to you.
Third, silence could mean there is a spiritual warfare hindering the answer. Daniel had no idea that the prince of Persia had withstood the angel of God from delivering an answer to him. You must understand that sometimes the silence in your prayer life is because of a spiritual warfare taking place. Sometimes the silence in your prayer life is God’s way of protecting you from the fierce battle of the spiritual warfare that is taking place. Trust me; you don’t want to be in the middle of the spiritual warfare. God’s silence could simply be the buffer that God has placed between you and the spiritual warfare that is hindering your prayer from being answered.
What should you do when it seems that God is silent? First, keep praying. Don’t take silence in your prayer life as a sign that God didn’t hear your prayer. You have to realize that God hears your prayer the first time you pray. Every time in the Scriptures that someone prayed, it is evident that God heard their prayer. Likewise, God hears your prayer, but the purpose of the silence hasn’t been revealed to you. Don’t let the silence in your prayer life keep you from praying until you hear from God.
Second, don’t despair. Don’t give up on your prayer life. Many believers have allowed the seeming silence in their prayer life to plunge them into despair and prayerlessness. Never let despair be the response to silence concerning a prayer. Keep praying even when you feel that nothing is being accomplished in your prayer life. The greatest prayer warriors are those who keep praying when God seems to be silent concerning their prayers. My friend, trust God that He knows what He is doing. Let silence build your trust and faith in God. Just keep praying until you get the answer from God.