‘To be conformed to the likeness of His Son.’ Romans 8:29 NIV
The Bible says, ‘Those God foreknew He… predestined to be conformed to the likeness of His Son.’ (Romans 8:29 NIV) When you read the preceding verses in the chapter you discover God does this through prayer. This should encourage you to pray. Many times we don’t pray because we don’t think anything’s happening. But with God, something’s always happening! We wonder, ‘When is He going to work?’ What we fail to understand is—He’s always working.
When it comes to prayer He’s either answering the way you hoped, or changing your heart through the Spirit’s intercession to bring your prayer into harmony with His will. You say, ‘But I don’t see anything happening.’ When you plant a seed, you don’t come back the next day expecting green shoots and leaves. Does that mean nothing’s happening? No, a host of necessary processes are taking place below the ground where you can’t see them. Don’t make the mistake of thinking because you don’t see the evidence that nothing’s happening. It’s just not harvest time yet. One way in which God is making us more like Jesus is by helping us to pray the way Jesus prayed, ‘Not My will, but Thine, be done.’ (Luke 22:42 KJV) That means when your prayer lines up with His will, He’s already working on it even though you can’t see it. And if your prayer isn’t in accordance with His will, He’s working to change your request by changing you.
Unanswered prayer can be as big a blessing as answered prayer, when it keeps us from violating God’s will. And what is God’s will? To make you more like Jesus!