The Hard Question of Prayer

In the wake of burying Dominic, the most difficult spiritual discipline for me to recover has been prayer.

In part because my heart just doesn’t know what to ask for or how to talk to a God Who has allowed this pain in my life.  

In part because I don’t really have a framework for placing the prayers I want to pray inside my ongoing struggle to commit my future and the future of my family to the hands of a Father Who didn’t step in to prevent Dominic’s death.

I still struggle with this.  

“When it’s not your kid you can think of all kinds of lofty, theologically correct arguments or reasons for why God answers one prayer and not another–for why one person is healed and not another–for why one person survives a devastating-should-have-killed-him accident but not another.

But when it is your child that doesn’t survive or isn’t healed or is stolen through the violent actions of someone else…well, that’s a different matter entirely.”

Read the rest of this post here: The Problem of [Un]Answered Prayer


Author: Melanie

I am a shepherd, wife and mother of four amazing children, three that walk the earth with me and one who lives with Jesus. This is a record of my grief journey and a look into the life I didn't choose. If you are interested in joining a community of bereaved parents leaning on the promises of God in Christ, please like the public Facebook page, "Heartache and Hope: Life After Losing a Child" and join the conversation.

6 thoughts on “The Hard Question of Prayer”

  1. I walk with God daily – I couldn’t get through a day without His help and His strength but I’ve only attended one prayer meeting at our church in the 2.5yrs since Leah died. I ended up crying through all of that and making others feel uncomfortable because we were supposed to be praying in small groups. My reaction put me off ever going back to another prayer meeting, although of course I go to Bible studies and worship services.
    I have a daily Quiet Time, I talk to God at various times throughout the day but still, it’s not like it was ‘before’; I feel about prayer the way that you describe Melanie, even though I don’t want to feel this way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Vicky, I understand. I can and do still talk to God-which is really what prayer IS, but praying in public is hard ( I avoid it whenever possible). And I guess part of my “issue” is how others talk about or “believe in” prayer-not belief in GOD but prayer itself. Saying things like, “Prayer works” or “Your prayers healed so and so”. I know we are commanded to pray but I’m convinced we don’t understand it nearly as well as we pretend to. Love you friend!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes! I call/ed it my faith crisis! I believe, trust, have faith in all who and that God is! I keep leaning into Him, waiting for my hurt to be redeemed, my aching hurting hole, healed. But, I’m beginning to think it won’t be in the time frame I’m wanting. This side of heaven. God is never late nor early in answering or meeting our needs. I trust there are reasons beyond my understanding for all that has happened and is happening. And hope in that I know when we are reunited and brought back to our Heavenly Father there will be no more pain, tears, or sadness. I lonnnnnnng for THAT day!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Yes. I have trouble trusting God, (who, yes, I do believe exists and is in charge of all), enough to pray. While I was praying for my Johnny, God took him home (heaven) for no reason. That is not what I was praying for when I asked for God’s protection!!! I have found I can pray a little for those not in my immediate family but I am afraid to pray for my husband or daughters. The pain is unreal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nancy, I am so very sorry for your loss. And like I said in the post-prayer is the spiritual discipline I am having the most difficulty embracing again. I believe that prayer has a place in the life of a Jesus follower, I’m just not sure how to approach it anymore. And I am worn down by platitudes like “prayer works!” or “Sometimes the answer is ‘no'” or “God knows best-maybe He was sparing you or your son from something worse”. All of those things may be true, but they do not help my hurting heart. Praying that God gives you strength and that His mercy and grace fill your heart.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh Melanie. I think we are at the same place. It just hurts so. What I know in my mind, what I though I knew and believed in my mind, doesn’t seem to be there in my heart any more. The Pastor who was with us during Johnny’s funeral and after told me that he could see my faith and that it is strong, but that it may be years before I would be able to see it again due to the pain. I pray he is right. It seems to be true for you. Hugs, tears and prayers (I do try). Nancy

        Liked by 1 person

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