Unanswered Prayer

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by Mary Hamilton

Many times, writers find themselves experiencing the very same faith crisis they’re putting their characters through. This was certainly true for me while writing my latest book, Pendant. The main character, Elaine, has given up on God and prayer after many years of seeing no answer to her most fervent request. She could understand if it had been a self-centered request. But her prayers centered on the safe return of one of her eighth-grade students who disappeared from a field trip and was never found. Months and years of praying for the girl and her family saw no results. 

How could I write about this without experiencing the hopelessness, disappointment and despair, the doubt whether God really means what He says in His word? God’s timing is perfect, and He allowed me to go through a similar period of doubt and questioning when a close family member battled a severe illness. I was surprised later to find the answer in what I had written. I hope this ministers to you as it did to me. 

Excerpt from Pendant: 


“I knew [you were praying for me] Ruby, and I admit it was a comforting thought. He answered your prayers.” 

She bobbed her head. “I wisht He’d’a done it sooner, but He doesn’t always answer us right off the bat. Sometimes, we have to sweat and suffer a little.” 

“Why, Ruby? Why would a God with the power to rescue wait until people are half-dead before He steps in? What’s the point of making us suffer?” Maybe I should’ve asked [the pastor] that question, but it seemed to fit the moment. The question felt urgent. 

“Our suffering isn’t the point. It’s our faith. Sometimes, He leaves us in the rough spot until He has our attention. Most times, we won’t look up until there’s nothing more to see at the bottom. Other times, He wants to give us a different perspective of His power or make us stronger by the things we’ve gone through. Tragedy and suffering themselves are never the point. To survive hard times, you have to get to know Him so well that there’s no doubt He’s as trustworthy in trouble as he is in good times.” 

“Then I guess I have a long way to go. But that verse you quoted, ‘Lord, to whom shall we go?’ The bottom of the well helped me understand that question. So maybe I’m heading in the right direction.”

Ebook edition of Pendant is available now for pre-order (coming soon in print). Delivery on November 8th. 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Pendant-M-L-Hamilton-ebook/dp/B076JSK3H9/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1508799035&sr=8-1&keywords=pendant+by+m+l+hamilton 

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/pendant-m-l-hamilton/1127264598?ean=294015494016 

Mary L. HamiltonBio: Monsters under the bed never bothered author M L Hamilton—it was the man hiding in her closet waiting for her to fall asleep so he could jump out and harm her. She never did figure out who he was, how he managed to hide in her messy closet, or why he was waiting until she fell asleep to harm her. But since then, she has imagined all sorts of other scary situations, which she hopes will provide the basis for more mystery/suspense stories. 

When not writing, she enjoys knitting, reading, spending time with her family, and a little amateur photography. She and her husband live in Texas.

Website: www.maryhamiltonbooks.com 

Facebook: www.facebook.com/maryhamiltonbooks

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