From The Quiet Place: Daily Devotional Readings by Nancy Leigh DeMoss:
He who teaches man knowledge–the LORD–knows the thoughts of man, that they are but a breath. ~ Psalm 94:10-11
One of my heroes in the faith is Gladys Aylward, the revered missionary to China who worked tirelessly for the cause of the orphaned and oppressed. She once recalled how as a young girl in London, she had dealt with two great sorrows: the shortness of her stature and the color of her hair. All her friends, it seemed, were taller than she, and each had beautiful golden hair, while hers was “boring” black. She often prayed that God would reverse these undesirable traits in her physical appearance, making her look more like the girl she wished to be.
Years later, however, standing on a wharf in the teeming, Asian country where God had sent her to share His gospel mercies, she looked around and saw people everywhere who were as short as she was–and each had jet black hair. In that moment she realized that God had known what He was doing all along. By saying no to her youthful prayer, He had answered her perfectly–beyond her wildest imagining.
Each of us can recall times when we wanted something from God that He seemed unwilling to grant. Yet the passing years may have already revealed to you that His answer was far wiser and better than yours would have been. You didn’t need that; you needed this. And God has used your life to reveal His glory more clearly because of it.
Then let this same heart and mind inform your praying today, even when it seems as if no other answer of His could possibly substitute for the one that seems best to you. Let Him be God. Trust His answers.
Can you live with “no” being an answer. If not, then what has prayer actually become for you? What does God want prayer to be?