Latter-day Saint Life

Elder Hales: When We Don't Receive Answers to Our Prayers


Recently, Elder Robert D. Hales addressed on Facebook a frustration many Latter-day Saints have experienced: that moment when you feel like Heavenly Father is not hearing or answering your prayers.

Elder Hales' profound wisdom, also shared in his talk "Waiting Upon the Lord: They Will Be Done," helps us feel God's love and understand His plan, even when He chooses to answer our prayers in a way that is different than we expected.

In my life I have learned that sometimes I do not receive an answer to a prayer because the Lord knows I am not ready. When He does answer, it is often “here a little and there a little” because that is all that I can bear or all I am willing to do.
Too often we pray to have patience, but we want it right now! As a young man, President David O. McKay prayed for a witness of the truthfulness of the gospel. Many years later, while he was serving his mission in Scotland, that witness finally came. Later he wrote, “It was an assurance to me that sincere prayer is answered ‘sometime, somewhere.’”
We may not know when or how the Lord’s answers will be given, but in His time and His way, I testify, His answers will come. For some answers we may have to wait until the hereafter. This may be true for some promises in our patriarchal blessings and for some blessings for family members. Let us not give up on the Lord. His blessings are eternal, not temporary.

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