I was talking to a friend about how life can be full of so many difficulties and it's natural sometimes to pray that God would change the circumstance. Paul in scripture prayed that his "thorn in the flesh" would be taken away, but even though he was a Disciple and spreading the gospel - God had repeatedly refused to remove it.
Or take the story of the man who was in an accident that caused him to be a quadrapalegic. Strong men of God prayed over him for a miracle to heal him completely but even today he is still in a wheelchair. Why?
If you look at Paul, that thorn in the flesh had a purpose in who Paul was. As for the man who couldn't walk and who wasn't miraculously healed - apparently there was a reason God said "no" to a complete healing then and now.
If you look at his life, you realize that he probably would never have been the servant of God in the ways that he has been, had he not been a quadrapalegic. His ministry and the church he led as pastor- the Jesus movement that he was such a huge driving force in - may not have brought as many people to God if this man was not an example of God's grace and provision. Even the fact that his injury meant he would have to adopt in order to have children.
If God had changed this man's life with complete healing, he likely would not have adopted the boys and their lives would have continued to be traumatic. Their individual lives, their children and the ministries they were able to lead all are in part because God had said no to the miraculous complete healing early in this man's life.
So we can ask why didn't God heal him and let him walk. I don't know - no one knows but God...but it is certainly true that God used that difficult circumstance to drive him to minister for the rest of his life...to rescue the boys he calls "son" and to reach out to people others pass on the street without even noticing them.
I know there are times when I've asked God to reverse traumatic things that happened in my life...to take away the circumstances and replace them with how I would like to live life. Those times God allowed those things to be what they were, as difficult as that was. But, now that I look back on my life I know that God used all of that to strengthen me and my children in our walk with God and in the work in ministry that we did. It gave us purpose and a home that we could put down roots.
So now, what if God changed it all for you? Think about it for a moment, Everything in life would change even the good would be different and the outcome would likely be a completely different life...maybe you wouldn't have your children, spouse...or your home, or family. It's like the movie Back to the Future...one change in history will completely change the future.
I still don't love some of the tough things I've lived through, but I know ...that" in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to his purpose".[Romans 8:28 ]
So our prayer maybe shouldn't be" God Change this circumstance." Maybe it should be "God use this to glorify you and to help me become more like Jesus. "