I was praying about a situation this past week and as I was praying I realized that sometimes the answers to our prayers come disguised as problems. At first I thought it was a great revelation when suddenly the light bulb lit up over my head and I remembered all the Bible stories that actually prove that point!
The first one that comes to mind is well known to us, I use it often myself, the story of Joseph the Dreamer. He was the son of Jacob and Rachel and his brothers were already jealous of him because he was the favorite child of their dad, so when he started telling them his dreams of grandeur they devised a plan to rid themselves of this pest. Long story short they sold him into slavery! Now that doesn’t sound like a plan to me, to go from a home where you were your dad’s favorite child to being sold as a slave and put into chains! However the end of the story we see Joseph saving the lives of his family, traitorous brothers and all by supplying them with food in the time of famine.
Then I thought about Esther, just a small town Jewish girl who happened to be very beautiful. She was also taken into the slavery of being groomed to be concubine to the King without any hope of having anything beyond one night with him knowing she would never have a normal life with a husband and children. The end of that story is that the King was captivated by her beauty, took her as his wife and the Queen of his nation and listened to her when she asked mercy for her people that averted the plan of Haman to have them slaughtered.
Bringing it a little closer home I often heard my mother tell of how when her sister was a little girl she had a large growth on her mouth that was causing it to become disfigured. Her dad had prayed and prayed for it but it didn’t go away and they were gong to have to get an operation to have it removed, not knowing how her mouth would look after it was done or what kind of scar she would have. They went out to visit a family in rural South Georgia and while the adults were in the house praying the children were playing tag, mother’s little sister was running and fell over some trash where a tin can had been partially opened leaving the lid standing up where it had rusted and this was what she had fallen on and it cut her mouth and the growth wide open. When the adults ran out to see what had happened she was a bloody mess! Mother said she thought it was terrible how even though they had prayed for her healing that God had let her fall on that rusted can and cut her mouth wide open, she was sure her little sister would get infected and have to go to the hospital and that it would leave a terrible scar! Bottom line, the cut healed, the growth was gone and it healed perfectly leaving no visible scar at all!
When I was a little girl I thought mother was being mean to me because I couldn’t have all the candy I wanted and I had to go to bed earlier than all my friends, but as an adult I know it is why my teeth grew in with no cavities and oh how I would love for someone to put me to bed early now! God is a good and loving parent to us and there are times He does thing we might not understand but He always has our best interest at heart!
If you are praying for an answer and it seems as your prayer is hitting a brass ceiling and falling back into your lap and everything seems to get worse, just hold on a minute God has your answer it just might look a little different than you thought it would.