Breakthrough Insights from an Astonishing Answered Prayer

Breakthrough Insights from an Astounding Answered Prayer

I learned some things about answered prayer from two Hondas and three friends. It started with a 2002 Honda Odyssey. I really wanted my minivan to make it to 300,000 miles. I babied her, took her to my mechanic faithfully, and beamed at the progressing odometer. It’s not so much because I was attached to her, I just don’t like a car payment.

When the oil puddles started growing, I finally decided to pray about a new car. You see, I have prayer issues. For some reason, I don’t share the desires of my heart with God. My reasoning is twisted: if I don’t say it out loud, I can keep it hidden from Him. A new car seemed like such a selfish thing to want so I just didn’t talk about it. 

God already knew.

He knew the worry that crept up every time I saw the dark oil stains as I backed out of the driveway. He knew the frustration I felt when I couldn’t turn the radio volume up or down. I am sure He remembers how sad I was nine years ago when I first sat behind the wheel of this beast and felt old.

I couldn't keep the desires of my heart hidden from the One who knows me so intimately.

I realized that I couldn’t keep the desires of my heart hidden from the One who knows me so intimately. So I prayed about a new car. My friend Brooke asks God for specifics so I gave it a try. My prayer journal reads:

I would like to donate our van and get a new-to-me car. I would like a Pilot. I want to do all of this without going into debt. 

I felt like a brat asking Papa for a new toy. But I knew I couldn’t hide it any longer.

Two weeks later, at 276,698 miles, the minivan died an honorable death. We knew the repair to stop the leaks would exceed her value. The final blow came the morning I pulled out of the driveway and couldn’t turn the steering wheel. I was a little worried, but I had a peace that God would guide and provide.

The day she died, we had a date night planned. We dropped the kids off at a friend’s house. We told Nes and Eve about our dilemma. We had to buy a car, but finding one we wanted and could afford would be tricky. Our friends called us back the next day and offered to sell us their extra car. It helped them by providing extra cash, and it most certainly helped us. When I told Brooke about their offer, she said Eve came to her mind every time she prayed for us (insert chills!).

Guess what kind of car it is? Yep. A Honda Pilot. And guess how much they asked for it? Yep. The exact amount we had to spend. They didn’t hear my prayer, but God did!

When it came time to let go of my faithful minivan, it was tempting to sell it for the little it was worth in order to restore some order to our savings account. I remembered my prayer that started, “I would like to donate our van.” God was faithful to give me the exact car from my prayer for the exact amount of money we budgeted. How could we do anything but continue to be a part of this miracle? We called a local organization that uses donated cars to give men a fresh start through mechanic training. I know, somewhere down the line, someone else’s prayers are being answered.

Here are five breakthrough insights from two Hondas, three friends, and one astonishing answered prayer

There is no need to try to hide what God already sees in my heart. He knows the desires of my heart. I saw it as metaphorically sitting on Santa’s knee, giving him my wish list. Not even close. Prayer is an intimate exchange of thoughts between my heart and God’s. 

I will not see the answered prayer until I pray the prayer. God works all around me every day. When I pray for specific things, I can clearly see His hand at work. If I fail to pray, I will be blind to the miracles I encounter. 

Pray with specificity so you know it's God when you see it. Lessons about answered prayer.

Pray with specificity so you know it’s God when you see it. Mark Batterson says it best in his book, The Circle Maker:

When imagination is sacrificed on the altar of logic, God is robbed of the glory that rightfully belongs to Him. In fact, the death of a dream is often a subtle form of idolatry. We lose faith in the God who gave us the big dream and settle for a small dream that we can accomplish without His help. We go after dreams that don’t require divine intervention.

Allow God to use you to be an answer to someone else’s prayer. There is a mama somewhere praying for the son who has his head stuck under the hood of my minivan. There is a family somewhere praying for a minivan they can afford. What seems like a small sacrifice for us can be a huge blessing to someone else.

Even if He doesn’t give me the desires of my heart, He is still a good God. My prayer for a new car wasn’t the only prayer I prayed that morning. I asked God for a lot of things. The only clear “yes” I received was the car. His silence on the other issues doesn’t discourage me. I know He is a good Father who loves to give His children good gifts (Luke 11:13).

 

#FridayFive Link Up

God answers prayers all around us. Today is a day to celebrate His goodness! Share an answered prayer in the comments or link up a prayer post using the button below. Let’s have a praise party!#FridayFive

Come back next week for Days I Would Live Again. You can share the very best days of your life! Or maybe some days you would do things differently. This could get interesting!

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Recommended Resources


The Circle Maker: Praying Circles Around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears, Mark Batterson

 

Photo credit: Jaelynn Castillo via Unsplash. 

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I am linking up with Crystal Storm’s #IntentionalTtuesday, Kelly Balarie’s #RaRaLinkup, Holley Gerth’s #coffeeforyourheart and Suzie Eller’s #livefreeThursday.

13 Comments

  1. This is really great!!! We actually had a similar situation with my husband’s truck while we were in the midst of moving (which I wrote about for Friday Five today)!! There was just so much else going on that I totally forgot to include that…..so six huge prayers were actually answered! We donated the truck to a similar organization, and He provided just enough money to get a different vehicle! So incredible the way He works. Thanks for another wonderful topic!!!

  2. what an incredible testimony!!! I have to admit I saw myself in your blog – most people would think that 300K in mileage is a dream, but its what I wished for my car.
    now I’m resting solid in knowing that my new car is HIS provision, not an item on my wish list.

  3. Very good post! I remember a time also when someone spoke to my heart that I couldn’t hide anything from God anyway, so why not talk to Him about it! I like that you mentioned that by not praying BIG prayers we rob God of a opportunity to show how great He is. We also rob ourselves of getting to see how great He is and how much He loves us. And we rob ourselves and others of having yet another reason to praise God, thereby robbing Him of Honor that He deserves. Let’s remedy that starting now! 🙂

  4. Your post is so on target for my husband and me. Right now, Robert and I are learning some valuable lessons on waiting – while praying. Remaining hope-filled – while praying. Being anchored in peace – while praying. Thank you for sharing your experiences. Prayer changes things but not always the way we expect. 🙂

  5. I love that you wrote this story down! May this post be an altar to God’s faithful provision for you and your family. Paying it forward has always been a very meaningful thing to me. It’s so beautiful to see it in action. I’m praising God with you!

  6. I will not see the answered prayer until I pray the prayer.

    Yes. Praise God who allows us to see HIS hand providing! I love Him. Thank you for this post.

  7. love that point about us not seeing the hand/work of God until we pray specifically – so true! i think i’m a good pray-er until I’m not. sigh. but i prayed i’d get another speaking gig to afford to attend she speaks. then I did two days later. but took three weeks to register. made it under the wire. now I’m praying about the flight and a needed roomate to share the cost. God knows. I’m asking! great post! (I prayed for a used Lexus suv Champagne Beige! found it – and it looked Champagne beige – it’s actually called Cashmere – close enough! Ha) next to you somewhere this am in sunny CA

  8. Kelly, I love this definition of prayer: “Prayer is an intimate exchange of thoughts between my heart and God’s.” God hears our hearts, but we can be blind to the miracles when we don’t pray the powers – powerful reminder. Thank you for sharing, friend. : )

  9. What a testimony!! I love it. I always feel so selfish and arrogant praying specific prayers, especially when they’re “me” based, it seems. But I’ve come to believe that when we are in submission to His will and we’re sincere in giving our hearts to Him, the desires of our heart can be prayed in His will- specifically. Thank you, Lord!

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  1. Quieting the Noise and Listening for Answers | A Life Contrary
  2. God’s Answer to the Prayers of My Heart | awkwardly graceful

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