Why Isn’t God Answering?

Have you wondered lately why things don’t seem to be getting better? I have. I look around and see many believers in Jesus trying to honor him. And yet, we don’t seem to be gaining much ground. Why is that? What are we doing wrong? Why isn’t God answering?

The answer may be found in these words from Isaiah. In this amazing chapter, Isaiah contrasts the type of fasting that God honors with that which he overlooks. That’s right, not all fasting (sacrifice) yields God’s favor.

Here’s what the prophet said:

For day after day they seek me out;
they seem eager to know my ways,
as if they were a nation that does what is right
and has not forsaken the commands of its God.
They ask me for just decisions

and seem eager for God to come near them.
‘Why have we fasted,’ they say,
‘and you have not seen it?
Why have we humbled ourselves,
and you have not noticed? ’
“Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please
and exploit all your workers.
Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife,
and in striking each other with wicked fists.
You cannot fast as you do today
and expect your voice to be heard on high
. Isaiah 58:2-4

My translation:

You’re not sincere. While you’re going through the motions in the hopes of winning my favor, you’re not really in the game. Because at the end of the day you still don’t love each other. You still look out for yourselves before you look out for others. And even though you’re sacrificing, that is not the kind of sacrifice I will honor.

I’m not sure what that says to you, but it tells me that all my praying, reading, fasting, preaching, giving and serving doesn’t mean squat to God if I’m not loving my family–my wife and children–and my neighbors. If at the end of the day all my religiosity hasn’t made me more like Jesus–and that means loving others as I love myself and serving them before I serve myself– then it means nothing to God.

Wow. I’ve got some work to do.


©2013 Will Davis Jr. Originally posted on May 28, 2013 at WDJ’s blog.