Why, when He ordered you with Fatherly ferociousness to let your requests be made known unto Him, did He turn around and say no?
Why would a loving Father smash your hopes and dreams about the one thing you know would make you happy?
The other day a frightening thing happened at my house. I was busy in the kitchen, measuring and dumping flour, when my twins started a squabble. They usually play extraordinarily well together, for two two-year-old boys, but occasionally there is a mutually coveted object of desire, such as the basketball or big brother's army hat.
So I didn't pay much attention at first, primarily because I was counting flour cups. (And smart mamas know that you shouldn't get approximate-ish with cups of flour in a cake recipe.)
But then I heard someone say, "Oh, no! They have the scissors!"
I nearly threw that cup of flour on the floor in my sudden sprint across the room toward the twins. (Smart mamas also know that you can re-count flour cups but children are irreplaceable.)
They not only had a pair of scissors, the scissors were open and four chubby baby hands were gripping the blades. And these weren't the dull, rounded-tip excuse-for-scissors that you send with your kindergartner on the first day of school. These were the real, adult-style deal.
I registered all of that in about three-fourths of the second it took me to get from flour to babies.
David, one of my twins, was attempting to close the blades on Daniel's hands. Daniel, on the other hand, was paying no attention to that while he gripped even harder in efforts to wrench the scissors away from his twin.
My friend, I saw blood.
Let me leave you hanging there for a moment while I make a confession. I am a screamer. When a child is balancing on the edge of something steep and dangerous, I scream. (This is not advisable.) When one of my boys is running towards another of my boys with a pointy stick aiming directly at his eye, I scream. Anytime I am scared, or startled, or worried. . . I scream.
Some women get all quiet and calm when these things happen. Not me. Not usually. Although I am working on it.
So I'm sure I startled both of them by my somewhat noisy approach, which caused them to loosen their grip for a moment, which enabled me to forcibly remove Daniel's hands (now dotted with welling flecks of blood) from the blades. Then I requested the weapon from David. He gave it up willingly. (Of the two, David is far more pliant.)
But when Daniel, his hands nicked and oozing, saw me put the scissors away (Way. Up. High.), he went ballistic. You would have thought I had set fire to his favorite stuffed bear.
I scolded the older child who had left the scissors lying on the floor, carried Daniel upstairs and gently washed the blood off his little hands, and then I cuddled him for a long time while explaining didactically how scissors are not for babies, etc, before he finally calmed down and accepted his new scissor-less lifestyle.
He had tiny nicks all over his hands, oozing with blood, and he still wanted those scissors. Foolishness is indeed bound in the heart of a child!
You and I, my friend, are sometimes like Daniel.
The Bible says that God is a loving Father who won't give us a stone when we ask for bread, or a snake when we ask for fish.
So here is my first possible explanation for why God said no: maybe you asked for a stone.
Sometimes we do this. Sometimes we ask for a stone or a snake, just like a two-year-old who cries for some wickedly sharp scissors.
Because we, my dear friend, are not omniscient. We don't always know that the spouse / car / job / money we asked for is actually harmful for us.
But that should not be a problem! We have a Father who IS omniscient and sees the dangers ahead that we don't see. He sees the blood that will cover our lives if we continue to fight for scissors. He sees the nicks in our souls that are already oozing because we have not yet surrendered that item to Him. We are still fighting for our coveted object of desire.
Sometimes He forcibly removes things from our lives when He sees that we are too attached to them to let go on our own. Sometimes He just holds out His hand and asks us for it. Always He asks us to trust Him.
Will you trust Him when He says no? Will you believe deep down in your soul that He is doing what any loving and omniscient parent would do?
He is saving you from pain.
Trust the heart of your Father.