So in the course of time Hannah conceived and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, ‘Because I asked the Lord for him.1 Samuel 1:20
The story of Hannah shows us an answered prayer, though Hannah probably would not have called it that during the many years she was asking the Lord to grant her a child. The truth of the matter is that God was indeed answering her prayers even through the long period of time she was barren. His answer then was, “No.”
It is not at all wrong to ask for things from the Lord; Jesus did. It’s also not wrong to ask again and again and again (just look at the parable of the persistent widow in Luke 18). We must remind ourselves that the Lord’s plans are greater and wiser than ours. So while we pray, we do so with an eye to His plan. We present our request and then echo Jesus’ words: “yet not my will, but yours be done” (Luke 22:42).
The particular grief of barrenness and begging the Lord for a child is familiar to many. In this and in other “unanswered” prayers, we should bring our requests before the Lord, trusting that His will is best, trusting His perfect character, trusting He will answer our prayers with His good plan for our lives.
Our Advocate stands in on our behalf, and our prayers are answered according to the infinite wisdom of our loving Father.