When I was in college, I listened to a good bit of country music — mainly because there was a pretty big chunk of my four and a half hour drive to school where that was the only thing on the radio. Well, that was my excuse at first, but I really started to like Randy Travis and Garth Brooks and friends.
Garth had a song that was popular at the time called “Unanswered Prayers.” I thought I understood what he was singing about at the time, but looking back I realize I really had just a kid’s understanding. I thought not being in this group or being liked by that guy was the point.
Since then, I’ve prayed lots of prayers that asked for things that made perfect sense to me, that seemed like they’d be just the cat’s meow. And a lot of times those prayers have gone unanswered.
And, like Garth said, I thank God for those unanswered prayers.
The Bible tells us that God’s ways and God’s thoughts are higher than ours. He has a greater purpose for us than what our minds can conceive.
This morning, I read Hebrews 11:39-40 in the New Loving Translation. This translation says, in part, “For God had something better in mind for us…” I know there’s a larger context in Paul’s teaching, that he is writing of a promised perfection that Christians can look forward to.
But those words “God had something better in mind” nearly jumped off the page. That seems like an important part of faith — trusting that God has something better in mind. That doesn’t mean life will be all roses and sunshine. Sometimes his “something better” is working to build character and perseverance and hope and faith in us. But He is faithful and just and trustworthy.
And He loves us. Oh how He loves us.