06 August 2020, The Tablet

Unanswered prayer – when God is on mute

Unanswered prayer – when God is on mute

Pete Greig


Why have you forsaken me? It’s the question every believer asks at some point in their lives. This week a revised edition of Pete Greig’s bestselling book on unanswered prayer is published. Here the founder of the global 24-7 Prayer movement describes the moment that shook his faith in a loving God, and five other writers reflect on the hurt and confusion they have felt when it seems that the God who says he is our Father has turned his back on us

“Wake up!” she gasped. “Something’s wrong.” Sammy’s whispers buffeted me out of a deep sleep. “It’s my leg.” Her voice bristled with fear. “I can’t feel it.”
“Shhh!” I was flailing around frantically for the bedside lamp. “You’ll wake the baby!”
Sammy’s elbow jabbed sideways. Her hand became a cobra ready to strike. Her chin thrust into her shoulder like a fiddle player. I’d never seen a seizure. My head was logical and my lungs full of helium. Danny was still asleep in the Moses basket by our bed, awaiting his next feed. I dialled the ambulance.

It is a terror to wake in the night to see the face you love more than any other leering demonically. The image stains your memory like the Shroud of Turin, and it doesn’t fade. Sammy’s eyes – those beautiful, summer-blue eyes – had turned to moons of white and her whole body now seemed to be shaking. I hoped she was unconscious but then, with superhuman effort, she forced out a single, desperate word: “P-p-p-prayyy.”

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