The effectual fervent pray of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16). “That you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2). “If we ask anything according to his will, He hears us” (1 John 5:14). “All things are possible with God” (Mark 10:27).

When I was a kid, I prayed for stuff.  “Dear Jesus, please send me a new truck for Christmas and bless my mother, my father, brother and sister and give us food to eat”.  I saw God as a Being that gave me what I wanted, when I did. Sometimes, we pray as if God is– we order up what we want with one-click precision and it’s on its way immediately.

I have learnt that God’s answers are more than a string of Amazon transactions geared to my comfort. God uses pray as a pathway of communication, just like I like “I click to order”. Whereas is for the ultimate good of the company’s bottom-line profit, so that anything I order gets sent, God’s “amazon-pathway” is for the purpose of alignment with His will for my greater good and His Ultimate Will, beyond time and boundary.  God has a design for each of us, and as we pray (click-click) we discover that design—He is a design-build God with a masterplan with a transforming process and marvelous product at the end.  Patience is virtue.

I have long decided that prayer is a mix of process and product, respectively transformational and transactional. The transformational God changes us and draws us closer to Himself as we communicate and relate to Him through prayer, a transformation interspersed with transactions and events.  The results of prayer represent a continuum of different aspects of response, all within the will of God, so in reality God always answers affirmatively from His perspective because God responds in a strategic, long term manner, fitting events into that strategic overall framework. Thus a human “NO” might be a Divine “YES”.   God’s responses are always for our ultimate good.  God is able to take you out of a circumstance and land you in another for your initial disappointment, but for His own better future purpose and your ultimate good.  Prayer responses may be filled with human disappointments and divine appointments. Throughout the rugged terrain of vale and hill, God is always present, moving us to transformational glory and punctuated by transactions. We are not to judge God by only specific events but reflect from a strategic perspective, where in the end He delivers the best product for our eternal benefit. God allowed that thorn in Paul’s flesh for greater glory. God is always answering your pray within His will—No I am singing with Yolanda Adams