When Others Get What You've Been Praying For
My husband and I are currently in a season where it feels like everyone around us is getting everything we have been praying and warring for. We both have separate but beautifully woven together callings. He is a worshipper and song writer. I am a writer, but of words not songs. We have had words spoken over us time and time again about what we are called to do and how our gifts will be used in the body. Every time someone speaks these things over us our hearts soar, our Spirit confirms. We know that these things are our destiny. In the last few years we've been very intentional about praying about and getting equipped to step into our callings, but it seems the more we pray about it the more people around us are moving into what we have been praying for.
It has been hard. It has been messy. There have been lots of tears. Lots of hurt. Lots of moments of feeling overlooked by God. Have you ever felt this way? Maybe you haven't been praying about moving into a calling, maybe for you it's buying a new house, or getting out of debt, or getting a new job, or having a baby, or getting married, or being healed. Well a few months ago as I was telling Jesus how unfair it is that everyone else was getting what I had so diligently prayed for I was reminded of this verse...
"Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn." -Romans 12:15
How many of you have heard this verse before? I think if you've never even been to church you've heard someone in your lifetime quote this, but you've probably heard the second part of this verse quoted many more times than the first part. Why is that?
I think we as Christians find it much easier to pray with those hurting. We see a friend or loved one going through a hard time and our hearts literally begin to break; feeling like it's being wrung out and left to dry. I know this feeling all too well. When someone I know looses a loved one I mourn with them. When a friend gets a bad report from the doctor I'm mourning with them. When a loved one finds out their baby no longer has a heartbeat I'm there crying for them. If you are like this too, good, you have the Father's heart! He mourns when we mourn, but let's look at Romans 12:15 again...
The first thing said is that we need to rejoice with those who rejoice. Easy enough right?? But what about when the person rejoicing just got what you have prayed and warred for? Is it still easy, or do you begin to feel a little resentment rise up? I know for me, my heart tends to move towards the latter. But if you'd allow me I'd love to give you some fresh perspective on this that has helped my heart lately.
When you see others getting what you've prayed for there are few things that this shows us:
1) God Knows When Is Best For You To Receive Your Answered Prayer
You aren't overlooked. Instead God sees the whole entire story of you're life. He sees the beginning, the end and the in betweens and knows exactly where that thing you've prayed for will fit perfectly into your story. We need to change our perspective from "God why are you holding out on me", to "Thank you Jesus that I'm not receiving this answered prayer too soon to where I can't steward it with excellence or truly rejoice at the gift you've given me."
2) The Longer We Pray For Something The More Gratitude We Have When We Get It
When we are given something immediately we many times won't be as grateful for it. This reminds of me when I was a teenager. My parents bought me a car to use once I got my drivers license. I didn't really take good care of it. I never got an oil change for it on time and I rarely cleaned it. But once I got older and saved up enough money I bought myself a new car and let me tell you. I scheduled my oil changes 1,000 miles before it needed it and I cleaned it at least once a week. I treated it so much better because I was invested. It is the same with something we have prayed for and put the hours of tears into. When we receive that answered prayer we are more grateful and steward it better than we ever would have if this prayer was answered immediately.
3) It Show Us That God Can Do It For Us Too
God never changes, right? Well then when we see others get what we've prayed for we now have an opportunity to look at that answered prayer in their life and say, "God did it for them, He can and wants to do it for me too." When we see others getting what we've prayed for we now have a physical representation of God's faithfulness in that area. (This is where that rejoicing from Romans 12:15 comes in.) I encourage you to find people who have had a victory in an area you're praying about and instead of allowing jealousy or resentment to rise up, look at that answered prayer and rejoice in knowing that He can do that same thing for you! See it as a faith builder, rather than a resentment causer.
When we begin to shift our gaze from what God isn't doing in our life, but instead see these answered prayers in others lives as faith boosters of God's goodness we are able to easily rejoice with others because now we have a reference to look back to whenever you begin to doubt if God can do whatever you are praying for. Beloved, you are not forgotten. You aren't overlooked. You aren't missing out. Keep pressing on. Keep rejoicing with those who are getting what you've prayed for because one day you'll be the one getting what others are praying for.
P.S. If you have a testimony of God's goodness and answered prayer in your life I'd love to hear it. Post it in the comments because maybe someone needs to rejoice with you and allow their faith to be built up in this prayer that hasn't been answered in their life yet!