I have had a number of prayers answered. Meaning–according to Scripture–God said “yes.” God does say “no” too, but when the Bible talks about Him answering prayers it means in the affirmative. (Of course He has good reasons for not answering prayers too.)
A lot of the memorable ones have been about domestic felines. My own or somebody else’s beloved pet.
When I was going through a rough patch and had relocated to leave an abusive, cult-like group our cat Little Wolf became deathly ill with pneumonia. He almost died. Desperately I prayed that God would save him. When it seemed He wouldn’t, I said, “All right Lord. Take him if You will, since Wolf is your creation gifted to us for a time in this brutal, fallen world. Thank You for letting us have him for 7 years.”
God responded by adding more than 10 years to his life.
More recently, Dad’s barn cat Abby disappeared. We all prayed for her, concerned she had been injured by a large dog wandering my parents’ property.
Three days later Mom found her dragging a broken leg and crying weakly for help. Now Abby is a house cat and lives with me. (Mom has three cats already, and they bullied Abby as an outsider.) She always wanted to be a house cat and I wanted to have one. The only thing noteworthy about that prayer was the persistence used.
More recently I prayed for my friend Vernon’s cat. Astrophe had disappeared. (Yes. Vern named his cat Astrophe.) He had been missing for a couple days. If a cat is missing more than 12-24 hours that is not a good sign. I begged God to spare him the loss of this pet since he had lost two beloved dogs recently and is a lonely man. That very night Astrophe showed up.
Another time I prayed for the cat of an online friend. This cat had suddenly grown ill. Like Vernon, this man lives alone and depends on the cat for company.
Before bed I prayed, “Lord, not just to spare this man grief, but also for Your Name’s sake, please heal his animal friend.” This friend is not a believer. God healed his cat soon after and he’s willing to consider prayers to God can make a difference.
I notice looking over these “cat prayers” that there were principles at work.
- The prayer of relinquishment that Catherine Marshall has written about in several of her nonfiction books and even the climax of her novel Christie.
- Reminding God that His reputation is at stake. Moses did that when God wanted to let the Hebrews enter the Promised Land in their own strength. God said He would go with them because Moses asked.
- Praying with persistence.
But my first cat prayer was not answered. When I was 8 our beautiful black cat Cherry vanished near Halloween and never returned.
This taught me God is not my cosmic bell hop. Yet, I continue to petition Him. Even if He refuses to give us what we ask for, it’s right to ask Him. He didn’t scold the Apostle Paul for his prolonged periods of prayer after all. Just told him, “My grace is sufficient for thee.” Paul needed his thorn to keep his ego in check. The Lord knows best.
Keep praying Christians!