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Sometimes our prayers get answered in very unexpected ways. How exciting that is! Can you remember when you had prayer answered in a way that you never thought of? I would even say that if most of our prayers are answered in a predictable way, we are not praying for the right things with enough faith. Because that is the essence of faith...evidence of that which is unseen, unpredictable.

Much like a time when F.B. Meyer was asked to address the first class of a university while crossing the Atlantic on an oceanliner. He was asked to talk about, "answered prayer." An atheist who was present as the service was asked by his friends, "What did you think of Dr. Meyer’s sermon?" He answered, "I didn’t believe a word of it."

Then Dr. Meyer went to talk to the other passengers. Many of the listeners at his morning address went to hear him, and so did the atheist, who claimed he just wanted to hear, "What the babbler had to say." Before heading to the service, the atheist had put two oranges in his pocket. On his way he passed an older lady sitting on the deck chair fast asleep. Her hands were open. In the spirit of fun, the atheist put two oranges on her outstretched hands.

After the meeting, he saw the old lady happily eating one of the pieces of the oranges. "You sure seem to be enjoying that orange," he slyly remarked. "Yes, sir," she replied, "My Father is very good to me."

He was surprised, "Surely your father can’t still be alive!" "Praise God," she replied, "He is very much alive!" "How can that be possible for someone your age?" pressed the atheist. She explained, "I’ll tell you sir. I have been seasick for days. I was asking my heavenly Father if he could send me an orange. I suppose I fell asleep while I was praying. When I awoke, I found he had not only given me one orange but two!"

The atheist was speechless. Later he came to believe in Christ. Yes, praying sure can give an answer.

(SOURCE: from a sermon by Aaron Kilbourn, "Praying the Powerful Prayer", 7/1/08")

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