Sermon Manuscript . . .
When God Won’t Listen
I was out driving yesterday and was reminded that election season is upon us. Our 45th President is in office, and we may be electing a 46th in November. Do you know who was number 32? Franklin Delano Roosevelt was our 32nd President, elected to four terms of office (though he died in the fourth), and guided the US through the Great Depression and WWII.
Because of his enormous popularity and the world stage he served in, there were often big parties and long receiving lines, where he had to meet everyone. He didn’t like them and complained that nobody paid attention at them anyway. It’s said that one day he went down the line, saying, “I murdered my grandmother this morning,” and people would respond, “Marvelous!” and “Keep up the good work! We are proud of you,” and “God bless you, sir!” It wasn’t till the end of the line when the ambassador to Bolivia leaned in and said, “I’m sure she had it coming.”
Do you listen to what’s being said to you? Most of us do that naturally. There are only two times you don’t listen to others. 1) You are distracted with something else. Your spouse is staring at their phone while you’re talking to them–you can get approval for anything . . . “I’m gonna hold up a bank.” Response, “Mmm hmm.”
Or 2) You don’t want to hear them. The man is heading to the garage, and as the door shuts behind you, you hear, “Honey, would you…” You know a request is coming–do you choose to go back, or do you act like you didn’t hear them?
As many of you know, I am the parent of three amazing kids–ages 12, 10, and 6. Now this has never happened with my kids, but I am told that sometimes parents hide from their kids. Their kids call out, but they don’t answer. Would you admit to walking into your closet when you heard little footsteps approaching?
Most of us have at some time pretended to not hear another person. Can we agree on this? We all stink. But then this happens . . . You walk by someone on the patio and say, “Hey, good morning!” and there is no acknowledgment as they walk by. And you’re left wondering, did they hear me and ignore me? Was that intentional? Or did they just not hear me? I should have been louder.
Now this happens on the patio sometimes and it stinks . . . I’m sorry if it was me–it was not on purpose! It feels bad to be ignored by people. But it’s far worse when you feel this way about God. You pray and you are not sure He heard you. The things you’re praying for go unanswered–and you’re left wondering, did He even hear me? Does He even hear my prayers?
The Bible says that He is all-knowing, so I can’t be surprising Him with my request. The Bible says that He is present everywhere, so it can’t be that He is busy with something else. The Bible says that He is all-powerful, so He must be able to answer and respond. He should hear everything, right? And most Christians believe that when God feels far, it is just a lack of faith or a lie told to our hearts. But that’s not always true . . . God does not hear every prayer uttered.
This morning, I want to look at the topic of prayer from a different perspective than we usually come at it. I want you to know that it may not just be your heart playing tricks on you. The Bible says that there are certain prayers that God will not hear. If you have ever felt like your prayers are hitting the ceiling, the Word is going to help you today. If you feel distance from God, maybe even like you’re talking to no one. You wonder if God is really listening–does He really hear your prayers? That’s the question we all have at different times. And that question is answered in Scripture with a, “not always.”
Turn in your Bibles to John 9. Here is a display of Jesus’ power over all life, as it describes the healing of a man born blind. The Jews believed that birth defects were the result of sin, either by the parents or the kid. Jesus corrects that understanding and says that the man was born this way to magnify God’s power. Since his birth as a baby, his eyes had never performed like yours and mine–they were entirely broken.
And in John 8:58, Jesus had just claimed to be preexistent to Abraham, and coequal with God. The Jewish leaders wanted to kill Him, but Jesus hid and then exited the Temple. After leaving the Temple, He passed by this blind beggar–which is the man in John 9. So He spits on the ground, makes a bit of mud and smears it on the man’s eyes–then tells him to go wash it off. John 9:7, “So he went away and washed and came back seeing.”
This throws the whole neighborhood into an uproar. So they bring Him to the Pharisees–the religious leaders. And the Pharisees were already angry at Jesus for claiming to be God, and now they have evidence that He broke the Sabbath. He did work (by making mud) on a day designed for rest.
Well, the story goes back and forth with questioning, accusations, fear and some humor. The Pharisees are saying Jesus is a sinner. The formerly blind beggar keeps restating what happened and saying, “Jesus must be from God.” Pick up in John 9:29 and following.
Now their treatment of Him is sad, but what I want you to notice is verse 31. This is not the major point of the passage, but it shows what everyone understands. John 9:31, “We know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is God-fearing and does His will, He hears him.”
This beggar is a man who has never read a book–he was blind. He has never been allowed into the Temple. But he’s been around the block enough to know that God does not hear sinners, but God does hear those who fear and obey Him. Now again, that’s not the big idea of the passage, but it shows what most people understand. God hears believers and doesn’t listen to the godless.
Now what if I told you that the beggar isn’t actually accurate in what he says? What if your understanding has been a bit off? Let me give you an example–turn to Judges 3. The book of Judges recounts Israel in the Promised Land after the conquest by Joshua and Caleb. In the book, you see these cycles of sin by Israel, enslavement by outsiders, Israel cries out to God and then God sends a deliverer.
Judges 3:7 to 9
Judges 3:12 to 15
And Judges 6:6 to 10, they cry out, God sends a prophet to say, “You have not obeyed Me”–then raises up Gideon to deliver them. We go through all that, just because I want you to see the beggar isn’t entirely right. God does hear the cries of sinners–at least sometimes. Are you confident that God hears your prayers? Do you know why God does and doesn’t listen to your prayer?
Throughout the Bible, there are passages that tell us what prayers that God refuses to hear. Though He is omniscient and omnipresent, our Lord does close His ears and His heart towards certain people. He chooses not to hear certain prayers. He will not listen.
Maybe you’re big on sovereignty in salvation and you’re thinking, “Aha–He won’t hear the non-elect.” But that’s not accurate either. Scripture describes six types of people whose prayers aren’t heard. They’re not all listed in one place, so we’re going to have to look at a few different passages. So let’s dig in with the most obvious.
1) The Atheist at Death
When someone who is godless calls out to God at the end of their life in distress and terror, He will not hear them. Job declares this as he defends his innocence against his friends’ accusations. Job 27:8 to 9, “For what is the hope of the godless when he is cut off, when God requires his life? 9Will God hear his cry when distress comes upon him?”
The questions here are rhetorical and they expect a negative answer. What is the hope of the godless at death? There is none. Will God hear his cry of distress? No. We don’t have time to go there, but Psalm 73 presents that distress as his punishment from God. So that when the affliction of death finally hits him, the person calls on God to get out of his desperate situation. And at that time, God closes His ears to those prayers. He refuses to deliver the godless man, because He intends for the man to bear the full weight of the punishment which God intended.
The man’s cry does not come from a broken spirit, with a genuine hope for deliverance by God, and desire to do His will from there forward. Rather, the man cries out to God in his terror and misery, hoping for relief. He has the worldly sorrow described in 2 Corinthians 7, that comes from remorse over wrongs done and a desire to avoid reaping what you’ve sown.
Now there are some people who make genuine deathbed confessions. You may have faithfully shared Christ with someone who was in decline, and in their weakness, with little hope, they repented and believed. I am not saying all near-death prayers go unheard. One of the most faithful men I know is a chaplain named Phil Manly. He shares Christ with doctors, nurses and patients every day. He comforts families and has led many to Christ.
Scripture shows us that true belief can happen on the day of your death. In Luke 23, what does Jesus say to one of the thieves on the cross? Jesus has been condemned, stripped, beaten and nailed to the cross. Hanging beside Him are two criminals–one of whom is yelling at Him.
Luke 23:39 to 43, “One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, ‘Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!’ 40But the other answered, and rebuking him said, ‘Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.’ 42And he was saying, ‘Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!’ 43And He said to him, ‘Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.’ “
We are hearing a near-death confession of belief–not a prayer to the Father, but direct communication with the Son. He is not an atheist at death. He sees his condemnation and agrees that it’s just (verse 40). He agrees with his punishment and believes Jesus’ sinlessness and lordship–so he asks Jesus for His mercy in death and the Lord hears and answers.
There are real deathbed conversions–but the godless who cry out in desperation due to distress will not be heard. If they want to be heard, they must genuinely repent. The next type of person whose prayers aren’t heard is . . .
2) The Proud Unbeliever
Turn in your Bible to Job 35. In this part of Job, Elihu is reproving Job and he totally misjudges him. What He says about God is often accurate, but when he gets to Job, he goes off the rails. Earlier in the letter, Job had said that the oppressed cry out and the wicked are not punished in this life. And here Elihu argues back about that.
at verse 9, “Because of the multitude of
oppressions they cry out; they cry for help because of the arm of the mighty”
(Job 35:9). Now skip down to verses 12 to 13, “There they cry out, but He does not answer because of the pride of evil
men. 13Surely God will not
listen to an empty cry, nor will the Almighty regard it” (Job 35:12 to
13). Elihu goes on to flame Job, but he gets this right about God. He says God
will not listen to the prayers of proud unbelievers
because their prayers are empty. They cry out in pride rather than in true prayer. Every prayer a believer makes is a statement of utter dependence upon a sovereign, holy and loving God.
Pride is the self-confidence that you can get by fine without anyone else. It is the belief that you are most important. When some trouble or crisis comes that exceeds your ability to handle it, the proud man or woman will pray, but they don’t desire deliverance from sin. They are just eager to get rid of the trouble, the circumstance, that pains them. Then they return to their self-satisfied, old ways. God will not hear the prayers of the proud unbeliever.
Psalm 138:6, “For though the Lord is exalted, yet He regards the lowly, but the haughty He knows from afar.” If the only time you pray to God is when there is crisis in your life, then God may not be listening to your prayers at all. This is an amazing thing–the Creator of the universe pays careful attention to those who think little of themselves. But those who are proud, He is distant from–He will not listen.
You might consider yourself a believer, but if your thoughts of God are few when away from church, and your prayers only come during grief, then you may never have actually been heard by God. And as surprising as that may be to you, even more shocking is that the act of repentance can change everything. When the proud repent and dethrone themselves and begin to trust in God instead of themselves, the ears of the Lord open wide to them. He is attentive and forgiving, giving abundant grace to the humble. All you have to do is repent, to confess your stubborn pride and inability to please God, and begin to depend on God.
You depend on Jesus’ death as payment for your sins. You depend on Jesus’ righteousness for acceptance by God. You depend on the Word of God to guide and direct your life. You depend on the Spirit of God to convict and transform you. You depend on the Church of God to equip and strengthen you. You depend on the Father to hear and answer every prayer of adoration, confession, and request you make.
Whenever it is that you cry out, wanting to change and depend on Him–from that time and forward, He will give close attention to your words. For He is opposed to the proud and gives grace to the humble. The third type of person whose prayers aren’t heard is . . .
3) The Church-Attending Evil-Doer
There are people who come to church every Sunday–they sing, they take communion, they call themselves Christians. But when it’s not church-time, they live like the world. Sunday morning may be the Lord’s time, but the rest of the week is theirs. In some cases it’s the pastor and the church body. In other churches, it’s just people scattered through the church family.
They are not just morally neutral, but they live corrupt, degenerate lives. They profess to believe, but their lifestyle shows they abandoned Him. They come to worship out of habit, out of guilt, out of fear–even self-righteousness. But they are not the children of God. Their hearts devise evil. They sit in worship and think of sin, while mouthing obedience. This type of person is everywhere–in Israel long ago, and even at our church today. And when they pray, God does not listen.
Turn in your Bibles to Isaiah 1. Isaiah was a prophet who lived in Jerusalem and had access to the kings’ courts. He prophesied through both good and bad kings, prior to the exile, when the kingdom was already split. The first half of the book is themed around judgment and the very first chapter of Isaiah opens with a courtroom scene. God is charging Israel with abandoning Him. He describes how they had been worshipping Him while living in blatant sin.
Isaiah 1:13 to 17, “Bring your worthless offerings no longer, incense is an abomination to Me. New moon and sabbath, the calling of assemblies— I cannot endure iniquity and the solemn assembly. 14I hate your new moon festivals and your appointed feasts, they have become a burden to Me; I am weary of bearing them. 15So when you spread out your hands in prayer, I will hide My eyes from you; yes, even though you multiply prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are covered with blood. 16Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from My sight. Cease to do evil, 17Learn to do good; seek justice, reprove the ruthless, defend the orphan, plead for the widow.”
The Jews in Isaiah’s day were engaged in the rituals they had learned from Moses. Every Saturday, they went to the Temple. They made offerings, they celebrated the feasts, they prayed, they did ceremonial washings. God would have none of it. “Though you multiply prayers, I will not listen.” The problem is not one of persistence, but lifestyle. God won’t listen to their prayers, because their lives are full of evil. They love sin, so these empty words go unheard.
Amos was alive at the same time, and Amos 5 describes the same type of situation and the same response by God. Amos 5 tells the story of people who love evil and still worship God. They lived in a peaceful and prosperous time. They take bribes, they play favorites, they stress out those who are godly. And then they go into the Temple and worship God. And they look at the country around them and express a desire for the return of the Lord.
To those worshipping with wicked hearts, God says in Amos 5:21 to 23, “I hate, I reject your festivals, nor do I delight in your solemn assemblies. 22Even though you offer up to Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them; and I will not even look at the peace offerings of your fatlings. 23Take away from Me the noise of your songs; I will not even listen to the sound of your harps.”
Then He promises to send all Israel into exile and end their days of peace. Though they cry out to Him in terror, He will not relent. This same truth shows up in Proverbs. “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but the prayer of the upright is His delight. 9The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but He loves one who pursues righteousness” (Proverbs 15:8 to 9). “The Lord is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous” (Proverbs 15:29).
God delights in hearing the prayers of His children. How sweet a promise that is. He loves the one who pursues righteousness. But if you have been coming to church and singing and taking communion, then going out during the week and living in gross sin as if there were no God, then you need to know that God utterly abhors your worship–He hates it. He will not listen to a word that you say. If that is you, not one thing you have said to Him has been heard.
Now look down at Isaiah 1:18 and following. “ ‘Come now, and let us reason together,’ says the Lord, ‘Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they will be like wool. 19If you consent and obey, you will eat the best of the land; 20but if you refuse and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword.’ Truly, the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”
This is the first of many calls to repent in Isaiah. Though your sins are as scarlet, there is hope. Back then, you had to turn from sin, have your sin atoned for in the Temple and then live obediently.
But even now, the church-attending evildoer can be made clean again. You just need to confess and turn from your sin, asking God for your sin to be atoned for through Jesus’ life and death, and then live in gratitude. The Atheist at Death, The Proud Unbeliever, The Church-Attending Evildoer–God will not listen to one of them unless their heart changes. The next type of person whose prayers aren’t heard is . . .
4) The Intentional Idolater
The first date I took Beth on was to picnic and hike at a state park called the Bowl & Pitcher. Some months later, drawing near to the time I was planning to propose, I took her back there. She thought that was the time. She kept waiting and we kept hiking. To this day, I think I was clueless. But I did have plans to go back there in a couple weeks and ask her to marry me. This was the scouting trip–it wasn’t to intentionally deceive her and I didn’t learn till later what she thought. But I did notice that the next time we went back, I couldn’t get her to stop hiking so I could pop the question. If I was being intentional, then I was running a bait and switch to put her off guard. But I wasn’t–I was just a naïve young man.
When I say that God won’t listen to the intentional idolater, I am using the word intentional here very purposefully. You can have a day when you look at a home and think about how much better, or easier, or more enjoyable your life would be with that new house. That can be idolatry, but it is not necessarily persistent and intentional. You can have a day when the actions of your child becomes the determiner of your joy, whether they are a toddler or a teenager. But those are accidental, rather than intentional.
Intentional idolatry is the rejection of God in order to elevate something or someone over Him. When you purposefully give the majority of your free time, your extra funds and your thoughts to something other than God, you are making it into an idol. When your joy becomes dependent on how someone else is doing, or how they’re feeling about you, then they have become an idol. When you derive your sense of self-worth and value from a person, or even a ministry, then you have an idol in your life.
Apart from Christ, our hearts are never-ending idol factories–and you cannot serve two gods. So when you abandon God to pursue approval from another, you have entered intentional idolatry. Since creation, we were made to worship. Romans 1 says that our natural gravity is to worship creation and the creature. The natural gravity of our hearts is to quickly elevate something in place of God and God will give you over to those idols. He will not hear your prayers, but will allow you to seek solace in those idols.
Turn to Jeremiah 11–Jeremiah was the last prophet standing in Jerusalem as Babylon approached to conquer and destroy the tribe of Judah. The book of Jeremiah is written to describe the coming judgment and to reassure that restoration will happen, after Israel has repented and learned. Jeremiah 11 describes the people of Judah as massive idolaters, and here is how the Lord responds.
Jeremiah 11:11 to 14, “Therefore thus says the Lord, ‘Behold I am bringing disaster on them which they will not be able to escape; though they will cry to Me, yet I will not listen to them. 12Then the cities of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem will go and cry to the gods to whom they burn incense, but they surely will not save them in the time of their disaster. 13For your gods are as many as your cities, O Judah; and as many as the streets of Jerusalem are the altars you have set up to the shameful thing, altars to burn incense to Baal. 14Therefore do not pray for this people, nor lift up a cry or prayer for them; for I will not listen when they call to Me because of their disaster.’ “
Twice He repeats, I will not listen to them–verse 11, “Though they cry to Me, I will not listen.” And verse 14, “I will not listen when they call to Me because of their disaster.” If you have elevated a child, a spouse, a job, a ministry or even this church in place of God, the Lord will not listen to your prayers. If you derive your identity, your sense of worth or your happiness from owning something, being someone’s, or doing something–then you have an idol in your life and heart. And when you come to the point of having to choose between that idol and God, your choice will determine your access to God.
Back in Judges, we see that same situation played out a different way. Judges 10:10 to 16, “Then the sons of Israel cried out to the Lord, saying, ‘We have sinned against You, for indeed, we have forsaken our God and served the Baals.’ 11The Lord said to the sons of Israel, ‘Did I not deliver you from the Egyptians, the Amorites, the sons of Ammon, and the Philistines? 12Also when the Sidonians, the Amalekites and the Maonites oppressed you, you cried out to Me, and I delivered you from their hands. 13Yet you have forsaken Me and served other gods; therefore I will no longer deliver you. 14Go and cry out to the gods which you have chosen; let them deliver you in the time of your distress.’ 15The sons of Israel said to the Lord, ‘We have sinned, do to us whatever seems good to You; only please deliver us this day.’ 16So they put away the foreign gods from among them and served the Lord; and He could bear the misery of Israel no longer.”
The right response to idolatry is verse 16. Israel put away their false gods and served the one true God–and He began to hear their prayers and pay attention to their requests. You have that same opportunity before you today. If your prayers have hit a wall and you feel distant from God, evaluate if there is another god in your life that you need to cast aside. The fifth type of person whose prayers aren’t heard is . . .
5) The Hardened to God’s Word
Have you ever had a rusty screw that you couldn’t turn? Two summers ago on the way to camp, the trailer I was towing got a flat. Thankfully, I was part of a caravan and up pulls Shawn Farrell with a hydraulic floor jack. We get it under and then start loosening the lug nuts. We had one of those cross wrenches and we couldn’t budge it–the nuts were rusted on. We stood on it and it wouldn’t move. We took turns jumping on it and the whole trailer’s rocking, and nothing–the bolts were rusted hard. Nothing could move them.
There are people who come to church that are just as hard to God’s Word. Turn to Zechariah 7:11. Zechariah was a priest and prophet who ministered to the exiles who returned to Jerusalem under Ezra and Nehemiah. His book is filled with encouragement to keep at work on the Temple so that it can be ready for the future promised Messiah. In this section, Zechariah warns the remnant in the land to obey God and not ignore or reject God’s commands.
In describing their grandparents and great-grandparents, he says in Zechariah 7:11 to 13, ” ‘But they refused to pay attention and turned a stubborn shoulder and stopped their ears from hearing. 12They made their hearts like flint so that they could not hear the law and the words which the Lord of hosts had sent by His Spirit through the former prophets; therefore great wrath came from the Lord of hosts. 13And just as He called and they would not listen, so they called and I would not listen,’ says the Lord of hosts.”
When people stop listening to the Word of God, God stops listening to them. As their hearts hardened towards the Law of God, so His ears closed to their cries.
Now we all struggle with sin, and sometimes fight to obey and do what we know is right. That is not what’s in view here. Look at the descriptions–verse 11) they refused to pay attention, verse 11) they turned a stubborn shoulder, verse 11) they stopped their ears from hearing, verse 12) they made their hearts like flint, verse 13) He called and they would not listen. Zechariah describes people who had hardened their heart to God’s Word.
In our context, this would be people who come to church, who attend equipping classes and CGs, but don’t ever apply the Word to themselves. You think of others during the preaching. You are comfortable talking about the Bible, but not your life. And usually everyone sees it but you. In fact, I might be describing you right now and you have no clue. And God says that in the same way you refuse to listen to Him, so He will refuse to listen to you. Just as He has pled with you repeatedly, so when you one day call to Him, He will be equally deaf. It is a scary thought.
Do you pay attention to the Word of God? There are people here who profess to believe in Christ, but never open their Bibles to read God’s Word to them. What confidence can they have that the Father will listen to them when they do not seek to listen to Him? The Atheist at Death, The Proud Unbeliever, The Church-Attending Evildoer, The Intentional Idolater, The Hardened to the Word–each of these categories are labeled as unbelievers in Scripture. They are categories assigned to those who are not saved. But the last category is a type of believer–the last type of person whose prayers aren’t heard is . . .
6) The Sin-Loving Believer
The only time I can find a believer’s prayers may go unheard is when they are loving sin–hiding and nurturing it within their heart. Sometimes in the context of counseling, you hear them wrestling with a major life decision and also find them to be regularly and flagrantly sinning. You could think of a couple entering premarital, desiring to get married, and committing ongoing regular sexual sin. At that point, they have no way to know whether marriage is God’s will. The evident sin in their life prevents them from hearing God clearly. A coddling of sin blocks clear communication with our God.
We see this in Psalm 66:18, “If I regard wickedness in my heart, the Lord will not hear.” The psalmist is giving thanks to God for hearing and answering his prayer. And he declares that if he had cherished sin in his heart (ESV), the Lord would not have listened to him.
Again, we see this principle in Isaiah 59:1 to 2, “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not so short that it cannot save; nor is His ear so dull that it cannot hear. 2But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear.” The issue is not whether you sin or not–we all do in some measure and kind. The issue is whether you covet and cherish a sin in your heart.
“Is there a secret sin you cherish, love and cultivate–something you give attention to and won’t let go of? For God to accept our devotions, while we are delighting in sin, would be to make himself the God of hypocrites, which is a fitter name for Satan than for the Holy One of Israel.” — Charles Spurgeon
The only thing that will block your communion and prayer life is unconfessed, unhated sin. Over and over, God’s Word promises that sinners who hate their sin are heard. Psalm 51 is a song of confession written by David after he realized that he had sinned by committing adultery and then murdering the woman’s husband. He is broken over his sin, accepting the consequences, but hating how it has damaged his relationship to God. And at the end of the Psalm he declares, “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise” (Psalm 51:17).
This is the amazing promise of Scripture. If you see your sin and are broken by it, God will welcome you with open arms, through Jesus Christ. Whether you have been a . . .
Hardened to the Word
If you recognize that you are in one of these categories, then God is calling you to repent right now. If you are convicted over sin in your life, He will hear you call out to Him. I would beg you to call out to Him while the opportunity exists. Call out to Him while your pride is gone. Call out to Him while your heart is soft to His Word. Call out to Him while your sin is despised.
If you don’t kill the rat that’s in your house, it breeds more till they take over. If you don’t deal with the leak on a boat, it will eventually sink. If you don’t deal with the sin that you see, it will grow deeper, darker and more dominant. These sins in our church are more dangerous to us than a hundred false teachers outside the church.
Are you confident that God hears your prayers? If you don’t deal with the sin that you see, you may cry out in despair one day, and God may not answer. Right now, if you are convicted, I can assure you that He will hear. And if you don’t hit one of these categories–if this has been interesting but not applicable to you, then here is God’s promise to you. You can be 100% confident that your prayers are heard every time.