Gratitude for Unanswered Prayers

Thank God for prayers unanswered prayers! Well, I thank God for prayers He did not answer according to what I wanted.

Last year was a particularly challenging year for my wife and I, but God saw us through. We were grateful for all the things we were able to accomplish during the last year and looked forward to greater accomplishments this year. We made plans for the year including getting better jobs and seeking small business opportunities for my wife and it looked and sounded great as we discussed all the options.

I came back from work one evening to receive the bombshell. It wasn't supposed to be shocking news, in fact it was supposed to be a joyful one however, the circumstances and the obvious effect the news would have on our plans didn't make it good for us. "I think I am pregnant'. My response was not the usual 'wow', praise God!' It was a struggle to maintain a concerned posture. 'Are you sure?' I asked. We sat down and began calculating and re-calculating. I guess I became an expert of sorts in ascertaining whether a woman is pregnant or not. One minute it looked like it couldn't be but the next minute it looked like we hit bull's-eye.

I went to God in prayer and told him I didn't want the baby. I gave quite a number of 'good' reasons why we didn't want a baby at this time. I even prayed with my wife and we told God that we had a choice in this matter and that since he has given us the freedom to make choices, we have decided that we did not want the baby. My wife kept doing the things she was doing, taking less precaution that she would ordinarily take as a pregnant woman. The more she worked hard, the more firmly the pregnancy established itself.

Not long after this, it dawned on us that God's purpose for our lives will not be complete without this baby. We went back to God, repenting and accepting His gift to us. From that moment on, all our fears and worries disappeared. The challenges were there but God always had an open door ready.

As d-day approached, I began praying that God would make the delivery of the baby, the best we have ever experienced. Sometimes when we pray, we do not expect God to take our words literally but that was exactly what God did in this case. On the day of the delivery, my wife had no sign of labour except a mild discomfort which she shared with a friend who was around that day. They both agreed that since that day was her ante-natal clinic day, she should go and make her observation known to her doctor. You can imagine her shock when the doctor examined her and told her that the baby was due in about 30 minutes! She was whisked off to the delivery room and in less than ten minutes, before the doctor could even prepare herself to lead the delivery team, the baby came!

What a miracle! Her friend who had been waiting at home was in shock as she received the news that her friend who had just few minutes ago been with her, had just been delivered of a baby girl.

I was in my office discussing with a former colleague who came visiting, when my cell phone rang. 'Good news!' Sounded the voice which I recognized as my wife's friend. She had been expecting some news for herself which I thought was what she was sharing with me. 'Oh, you got it, right?' Then I heard the remaining part of the message, 'You have a baby girl!' I was stunned. I didn't even know whether to laugh or cry or do both. I looked at the person beside me as if I was in a trance, 'I just got the news, my wife was just delivered of a baby girl'. I was reminded of Psalm 126:1 "When the Lord turned again the captivity of Zion; we were like them that dream (KJV). You know, sometimes when you receive a wonderful news unexpectedly, you just go dumb and it takes a while before the import sinks in. That was exactly how I felt that day.

God has a purpose and a plan for each and every one of us. What I have learnt from this episode is that sometimes God takes us through a route which seems in negation to our plans. If we surrender to His will, it will become clear to us later that no other way could have been better.

Yes, I thank God for unanswered prayers. If He had answered my prayer, I would not have a lovely baby girl which is the cynosure of all eyes in my home at the moment. I would have been denied of that feeling of carrying that bundle of joy in my arms and watching the little hands try to curl around my finger. She is indeed a precious gift and what better name to giver her than PRECIOUS, OLUWADUNNI, and ESEOSA. The last two names meaning, 'God is sweet to have' and 'Good child'. We believe that these names are prophetic and that this child we live to fulfill her purpose in Jesus Name.

Steve Popoola Biblepraise Fellowship Online (c) 2004

Steve Popoola was born in London but currently reside in Lagos, Nigeria with wife Maris and their two children, Praise and Stephanie. He works in the IT dept of a bank. Formerly an active singer, he still sings occasionally and speaks at invited forums. He is moderator of the Biblpraise Fellowship Online and editor of Biblepraise Newsletter, a weekly Christian e-zine. To subscribe, send blank email to . He can be reached through His email address, , or visit his website at

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