There are a handful of questions, when asked of Christians in large or small group settings, that can spur silence. "How have you seen God answer your prayers this week?" is often one of them.
Why is this such a difficult question to answer?
There are many obstructions in our day and age that hinder our ability to see God working all around us each day.
The busyness of the typical American keeps one's nose to the grindstone and eyes narrowly focused on self, or the matter at hand; making it difficult to see God working in the great or small.
Over-focusing on things that entertain also can distract the Christian from being watchful for God working in or around them.
One solution: By being continually connected with God in prayer (1 Thessalonians 5:17), we become attentive in watching and listening for God's instructions on how to pray, plus we grow in sensitivity to see Him answer our prayers!
There are hundreds, maybe thousands, of books that tell about how to pray, why prayer is important, and more. The Bible is the most important of these! Have you noticed that the Bible also serves as a record of answered prayers?
Many of David's answered prayers were recorded in the Psalms. Favor in battle (daily struggles and adversity), rejoicing in the closeness of fellowship and deepening relationship he had with God, confession of sins, instruction the Lord faithfully gave him, and more. Psalm 34 is one of many examples.
I agree with Paris Reidhead in his book, Beyond Petition: Six Steps to Successful Praying, when he said, "I believe that you and I ought to be writing books on answered prayer."
So, what would happen if we began to keep a running list of answered prayers?
2. It would serve as an added motivation to continually go, and be before, God with all kinds of prayer (affirmation, confession, thanksgiving, praise, wisdom, and faith)- knowing that He has more that He wants us to learn, know, see, experience in Himself and His creation!
3. If we find ourselves in a dry season of faith, the record of answered prayers would be readily available to help remind us of God's faithfulness, trustworthiness, love, grace, closeness, and more.
4. We wouldn't be caught without an answer the next time someone asked how God answered our prayers this week.
If you're not already doing so, set aside a notebook or open and save a document on your computer to record answered prayers of all kinds. You might begin by recording some answered prayers you've seen in your lifetime (they can even be from as far back as 1993 or earlier!) or more recently. You may also desire to type up a list of prayers you're seeking answers for. Then, as He answers, you can move them to the "answered" column!
Let's continue to seek God in all things and in every place we go. Let's watch Him working, then record what we see Him doing- as a testament to His work in our lives, others' lives, and to generations to come as well!