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  • Writer's pictureJill Jarrell Newsome

Unanswered Prayers

As we get hurricane updates I am taken back to last year's Hurricane Florence. I was in Portland with my daughter for an important visit. Mike was due to have a heart procedure the day after I returned. I needed to be at both places with one travel day in between! I could not get much information in Oregon regarding the hurricane. Facebook kept me updated. I, also, could not talk to Mike, Ivey or my mother. I was worried about them and wanted to be home for that. I would pray for God to get me home. I wanted to be home with Mike for his procedure - not knowing that that would be cancelled. I cried and worried and kept asking God why I was stuck in Portland. (Any other time we would have been having a great time and I would not have wanted to leave!) After a day I started thanking Him for taking care of things. I knew there was a reason but I wanted to know what it was. Thank goodness God did not answer my prayer! Let me rephrase that, thank goodness God did not answer my prayer in the way I wanted!

Saturday morning I got the call that my mom had fallen and had broken her hand and had a brain bleed. They were trying to airlift her from my brothers to UNC hospital. My family could not get to her. I-40 and the back roads were closed. Little did I know that it would take I-40 three weeks to reopen. I fell apart. I hit my knees thanking God for not answering my prayer so I could get to Mom. I asked Him to get me to the right customer service person at the airlines and he did. The Raleigh airport would open that day at noon and she went ahead and let me book my ticket. She got me assistance the whole way because I was a mess! (southern for confused or full of difficulties) I prayed and prayed and prayed for me to get to see Mom! I got to her that night at 1:20 in the morning and it was a happy reunion! The next day Sarah arrived from Portland. It was a while before the rest of the family could come.

I still remember crying out to God, "why"? It always takes me a lot of "why's" before I can just trust. God always has the better plan. Proverbs 3: 5-6, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 16: 1, "We may make our plans, but God has the last word." I am grateful that God had the last word or I would not have been able to get to Mom!

1 Thessalonian 5: 18, "...give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus." Gratitude reflects our trust in God. When we are thankful we have the right perspective. We thank Him for blessings and burdens because we trust His plan for our lives. He hears us and is faithful to answer us, but not always in our way. His ways are not our ways. Isaiah 55: 8-9, "'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,' declares the Lord. 'As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.'" We may not understand until we can look back and see His hand all over it.

As this hurricane approaches I am worried about Sarah flying home. Of course, she is to fly home Thursday (the day Dorian is scheduled to hit) for ten days! I am just trusting Him to make it perfect! So much good can come from these hard times. Keep thanking God for the hard times that make us grow!

Think back to a plan that God has changed in your life. How did he change it?


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