BIBLE STORIES

Why are your prayers not answered?

There is no divine manifestation or excellent results without proper preparation. It’s not just what we say outwardly that guarantees a release from heaven, but what happens in the heart. James 5:16 says, “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” Fervent prayer means sincere and continuous. Prayer has its root in the heart. Your heart is what truly matters because it is the place of communion between God and man. Just as the Levites offered sacrifices in the Old Testament, our hearts are the altar upon which the sacrifice of all praise and worship is offered. First, you must forgive. This is a vital part of heart preparation. The love of God and of man is the whole explanation of God’s laws. Our hearts must be filled with love for both our neighbor and God; this is a fundamental requirement. If all our prayers are to reach our Lord in heaven, when Jesus taught the disciples to pray, one of the most important things He said was, “And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.” This means, “Lord, forgive us as we forgive others.” Our sins are not forgiven if we refuse to let go and forgive others. This surprises most Christians because we feel that forgiveness is freely obtained in Christianity. This is a mistake because we are also required to act in love to receive the love that God also has for us. If we hold onto the sins of others against us, then the Lord will document ours as well. If we wish harm upon them, we only wish harm upon ourselves. Holding onto sins causes your sins not to be forgiven. Until your sins are forgiven, you have no prayer connection with God. Psalm 130:3 says, “If you, Lord, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand?” Many of us have cried out in all types of prayers and fasts, but God did not hear them because we are holding onto the sins of others in our hearts. You probably told your neighbor, “It’s over, I forgive you,” but it’s not over in your heart. Because the Bible says in Psalm 66:18, “If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.” Your prayers are not heard. The cost of unforgiveness is too high, so it would be spiritually unwise to live with unforgiveness. Unforgiveness is one of the devil’s traps to make you lose favor with God. To emphasize the importance of forgiveness, Jesus told the parable in Matthew 18:23-35. Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him. Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt. At this, the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt, and let him go. But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded. His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’ But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened. Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart. When someone offends you, think about everything God has forgiven you and think about the price of Jesus’ blood. When someone offends you, think about the cost God paid with the blood of Jesus. Then it will be easy to forgive them. You need perspective to forgive. You may feel heartbroken and betrayed and hold it in your heart, but when you think about the enormous debt God forgave us, it’s obvious there is no offense comparable to what God has forgiven us, and Jesus paid the ultimate price. No offense is as great as the innocent blood of Jesus. Number two, consecration: Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear. For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness (Isaiah 59:1-3). Sin is a great barrier to our prayers reaching the throne of grace. It separates God from us; it’s a great obstacle for our prayers to be answered. God is continuously angry with the wicked, so He will not even hear the prayers of the wicked, let alone answer their prayers. Consecration comes from the Latin word “consecrate,” which means dedicated and devoted. An antonym is to profane. We need to be dedicated to the things of God; we cannot betray God. We have to be dedicated and devoted to Him, but preparing your hearts in purity is the first step to establishing a good prayer connection with God. Prayer can only flow when sin is absent. Both a pure heart and clean hands are needed to approach the presence of God. Anything that defiles or corrupts our hearts interferes with our access to the direct line to heaven. The Bible tells us, “If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened” (Psalm 66:18). You cannot maintain an intimate relationship with sin and expect God to embrace you. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God (Matthew 5:8). This verse deeply understands that only the pure in heart should expect to have the hands of God in their affairs. If God is to hear us, we must turn away from intimacy with sin. Because I have called and you refused, I have stretched out my hand and no one paid attention, and you neglected all my counsel and did not want my reproof; I will also laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, when your dread comes like a storm and your calamity comes like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you. Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently but they will not find me (Proverbs 1:24-28). While you remain in sin, you are out of contact with God. The only prayer of a sinner that reaches God is the prayer of repentance. I repeat, the only prayer of a sinner that reaches God is the prayer of repentance. It’s only after God receives your cry for repentance that He will listen to your cries of distress because it’s only after He saves you from your sin that He commits to saving you from your afflictions. That’s why many of the redeemed remain afflicted; their sins have made the heavens above them like iron. Many have cried out, screamed, and lamented, but they haven’t obtained results. Whenever God is about to extend His blessings towards you, your sins come to memory, and His mercy is turned off.

Hebrews 12:14 says, “Without holiness no one will see the Lord.” Song of Songs 2:15 says, “Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom.” Any fox you allow to remain in your vineyard will prove to be the greatest danger to your Christian life. That lying tongue, malice, uncontrollable anger, stubbornness, hidden pride—all can be destroyed if you’re willing to let them go.

Thanks be to God, the Bible says sin no longer has dominion over us (Romans 6:14). It lost its power over you 2000 years ago when Jesus was hung on that cross and cried out, “It is finished.” (John 19:30). Second Timothy 2:19 says, “Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: ‘The Lord knows those who are his,’ and, ‘Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.'”

However, if you haven’t been born again, you’re a sinner, and Jesus said, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again” (John 3:3). But God is willing to receive you and forgive your sins if you call on Him to save you. Ask Jesus to cleanse you with His precious blood and make you a child of God, and you will be saved (Romans 10:9, 13).

Number three, free from offenses: Many of us are angry and offended with God. If God is against you, who will save you? However, when you’re offended with God, you make Him against you. If you despise Him, who will lift you up? Anything that makes you want to complain against God is leading you away from your purpose. You may not get results for your prayers if your heart is full of offenses against Him. The Word of God says in Isaiah 45:9, “Woe to those who quarrel with their Maker, those who are nothing but potsherds among the potsherds on the ground. Does the clay say to the potter, ‘What are you making?’ Does your work say, ‘The potter has no hands’?”

If God were to take His breath from you for a minute, you would be dead. If you lost something, God is the reason you didn’t lose everything. Perhaps the intention of the evil one was to take your life, but God intervened, and you only lost a possession. If God were to withdraw His hand from human life, imagine what your life would be like.

Romans 8:28 tells us, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Count on God’s faithfulness in all things. Let God know that you have no alternative but Him and that you are ready to persist until the answer comes from Him. Let your destiny enter into full motion by eliminating all complaints you have against God and establish a connection with heaven. Everything that makes you question God’s integrity or His love for you must be set aside so that your heart can be prepared for the fire of heaven.

And in this, I strive to always have a clear conscience before God and man (Acts 24:16). For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. What happens in your heart leads to your result in the kingdom of God. 1 Samuel 1:13 says, “Hannah was praying in her heart, and her lips were moving but her voice was not heard. Eli thought she was drunk.” Although Hannah was speaking in her heart, God heard her. Although we may rejoice when others recognize us for what comes from the outside, God evaluates us by what He sees inside our hearts. Therefore, there are no extraordinary answers to prayers without extraordinary heart preparation, and thus your heart must be prepared for an encounter with Him when you pray. If you don’t want your prayers to end in futility, you must prepare your heart. Heart preparation belongs to man, but the answer of the tongue comes from the Lord (Proverbs 16:1). The Bible also makes it clear without a doubt that an unprepared heart is highly unlikely to receive an answer from heaven. If something has damaged the altar of God in your life, you must strive to repair it because until that is done, communication in prayer cannot be established. In 1 Kings 18:30, before Elijah’s victory on Mount Carmel, the first thing he did was repair the broken altar, which in the New Testament order represents the heart.

As we conclude our message on heart preparation for genuine communion with God, let us recall the importance of a solid spiritual foundation based on forgiveness, purity, and freedom from offenses. May this message serve not only as a reminder but as a call to action to repair the altars of our hearts, removing anything that obstructs our intimate communication with the Creator. May each of us strive daily to maintain a pure heart, a clear conscience, and a spirit willing to submit to the Divine will, knowing that it is in this sacred ground that the seeds of our prayers are sown and watered by faith and hope.

With prepared hearts and souls thirsty for God, let us confidently advance in the promise that our prayers will not only reach the ears of the Father but will be answered according to His great love and purpose for our lives. May we then witness heaven touching earth, transforming our realities, healing our wounds, and strengthening our faith in the name of this spiritual journey that we all seek to undertake. We wish that the peace, grace, and mercy of God be abundant in your lives, guiding every step, every decision, and every prayer. If today you have experienced the Divine presence while watching this video and feel the desire to have a transformative encounter with Christ, initiating a new phase of your life, or if you want to renew your commitment because you have strayed from the path for some reason, or even if you have never accepted Jesus Christ as Lord in your journey, I lovingly invite you to accept Christ. Leave your comment below expressing, “I accept you, Lord Jesus, as my only and sufficient Lord and Savior of my life.” Until next time.

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