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July 18, 2020 - He is speaking

It seems to me that your major concern is that you do not think you are receiving an answer to your prayers for a testimony. At one point you say, ‘Why has there never been communication between God and myself—one to one?’ At another place you say that you have prayed and nothing has ever happened.
Perhaps your prayers have been answered again and again, but you have had your expectations fixed on a sign so grand or a voice so loud that you think you have had no answer.

President Dallin H. Oaks, “Life's Lessons Learned”

I've been thinking about answers to prayers lately and my focus has been on two areas...

One) ... why do we need to pray if God is going to follow His own will and time-line anyway? I've actually thought about this a lot. Why is it important for me to pray for myself or for others if God will follow His plan anyway? It's not like we are going to change His mind on something. Well, number one, is we are commanded to pray and serve. When we pray for others, or fast, or give Priesthood blessings, we are serving the needs of someone else. That will bless us and whomever we are serving. And we need those blessings.

The second part of this first thought is that even though the Lord's will will be done, we are learning what His will is, the more we pray or fast. We are gaining more humility. We are showing Him that we put our eternal welfare above the natural and carnal. The more we pray, or fast...the more our will is aligned to His will. Then, we shall ask not amiss for things.

Two) .... maybe He is answering our prayers but we aren't paying attention. This is very probable. And those answers may not be in the affirmative. We may be so focused on an outcome that we don't hear Him saying "not now", or "no". Some of the time we may not even know that we are subconsciously focused on a particular outcome. Maybe experience or society has solidified something in our mentality that we aren't opening our minds quite enough to "hear Him".

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