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When God Says No It’s Hard to Be Still


Have you ever been in a season of waiting?  God said, “No,” or, “Wait”, which means no, not now, and so you wait for His direction.  What do you do when God says no, but you still want the thing God said no about?  It’s hard to be still when God doesn’t say, “Yes.”  Today, as we continue in our 40-day fast of being still and knowing God more, we see what happens when you get tired of waiting for God to fight for you.  To be specific, what happens when you ignore God’s no and fight for yourself anyway.

Did you find this 40-day Fast to learn How to Be still mid-series?  Go back here and read the intro and keep up with the series.

When God Says No Will You Trust His Heart Today? Click To Tweet

What Do You Do When God Says No?

In Exodus 14:14 we saw a beautiful picture of God’s people, walking in obedience to God’s will, learning how to be still and let the Lord fight their battle.  They taught us to quiet the fear, anxiety, and worry in our minds to trust God will fight for you in the face of real danger.

Today we see a stark contrast and have to ask ourselves an honest question, “What do you do when God says ‘no’?” 

King Ahab is not known for walking in obedience to God.  He was not walking in God’s will and he got tired of being still when God said no.

“Now the king of Israel said to his servants, “Do you know that Ramoth in Gilead is ours, yet we are still (Being Still) doing nothing to take it from the hand of the king of Aram?”” (1 Kings 22:3 AMP)

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What Does It Mean When God is Silent?

The Context of 1 Kings 22:3 gives us many applications to our own lives.

King Ahab had a come to Jesus moment three years before his death- sort of.  He saw God and understood, at least for a moment, that God was God and he was not.  King Ahab humbled himself and that pleased God.

God gave him three years of peace and King Ahab prospered in those years.  He had wealth, power, stature, everything a man could want.  The king even acquired an alliance with King Jehoshaphat bringing an uneasy alliance between the split Kingdoms of Israel.  Amazing!

But there was something King Ahab wanted, something he felt was his.  He was entitled to it, it should be his, he could take it if he wanted it back.  The place was Ra-moth in Gilead.

The how’s and why’s of all that will have to wait for another day, but today we just need to understand that the king wanted something God did not give him and the king could not be happy without it.

God was silent for a time, then God said no.  What does it mean when God is silent?  It isn’t always proof of a no, sometimes it means to wait, but what happens when we push through anyway?


Signs That God Is Saying No

Observations on 1 Kings 22:3 lead me to ask a lot of questions.

Why is it so hard to see all the blessings when there is something you want (something God said no about)?

Do you take time to look around and count your blessings?  I try to spend some time each morning thanking God for the things in my life that are blessings.  But when I want something it is harder to do that.  All I can think about is the thing I want but don’t have.

  • When God says no to a relationship
  • When God says no to healing
  • No to something for my children
  • When God said no to marriage or in marriage

Maybe sometimes God doesn’t say, “Yes” because I didn’t ask right.

Other times I don’t have it because God said, “No”, or God said, “Wait” which feels like no, and I pushed through anyway.  In that way, I can relate to King Ahab.  How about you?

God’s Answers

Honestly, I pray and ask God about so many things.  What I’ve learned is that God usually gives us one of three answers; God says yes, no, or wait. 

When God has said no or wait I tend to keep asking.  When He stops answering me it is often because He already said No and I need to accept His no!

“Waiting is hard. How long can you be content to be still and wait on things you want?

There are things I want in life, dreams I long for, passions I want to see realized.  If I’m honest, most of the time I trust my own plans, my own understanding, my own ways, and assume God should be on the side of my logic.  So how do we respond?

Related Post: When Your Prayers Arent Answered

Who Is King of Your Heart?

What do you do when God has said, “No”, but you think you can do it without Him?

Okay, let’s be honest, King Ahab had a point.  Ramoth Gilead should have been his.  He had defeated this nation two times before. With the new alliance defeating them a third time and taking back what was his seemed like a no-brainer.  Why even bother asking God about it?

When logic says yes, it is so tempting to leave God out of the decision-making. Can you relate?

Because we see things and understand things from a human logic we leave God out of our planning or we fight with Him when He says something that seems illogical to us.

King Ahab finally asked the prophet of the Lord if they should go to battle.  God clearly said, “No, be still.  If you go to battle you will die.”

When God is Illogical

It is hard to be still when God seems illogical.  He says no but logic says yes. We see the struggle as we apply 1 Kings 22:3.

Many times, God’s answer to prayer is hard.  God’s ways and thoughts are higher than our ways and thoughts.

As much as we want to obey God, we think we know best. Because we think we know best there is a struggle to obey God when God says, “Be still”, “No”, “Wait” or “Not yet.”

God sees the whole of our life.  He sees the turns and twists, the future we can’t imagine.  Why is it so hard to trust God when He says, “Be still, trust Me.  Let me handle this.”?

Trust God When He Has Said, “No.”

The conclusion or final thoughts about 1 Kings, are that we need to trust God when HE says, “No.”

King Ahab died in the battle. He died – deliberately disobeying God.  God clearly said no but King Ahab thought he knew better so he ignored God’s no.

What has God said no to you about?

He has said no to me about so many things.

  • He has said be still and wait in this season of mothering small children.
  • Be still and let ME fight for you when your marriage is difficult.
  • Do. Not. Fight. For. Yourself. when others criticize your following Me.
  • Do not plan based on your understanding of your ministry and business.
  • Trust Me, lean on my understanding.
  • Be still when there is a battle all around you (Spiritual, mental or physical battle).
  • Don’t worry, fear or be anxious about these hard things you see all around you.
  • Trust that I have them under control.

A Prayer to Be Still When God Says No

Holy Spirit,

Forgive me for holding onto my rights when You clearly say no.  Give me the strength to relinquish my rights and shoulds and discontentment to You.  I trust You.  You have been faithful and trustworthy.  I don’t know why I can’t just leave this with You, trust You about it and be thankful for all the yeses.

Today I surrender our finances to You… again.  Again I submit to Your will about my dying momma. Today I surrender my husband to you… Again.  Take my fears over my children’s future.  I lay my pain and anxiety at Your feet.  I trust that since You said, “No,” there is a good reason and I am asking You to help me want what you want for this life.

It’s hard to be still, calm me, hold me, surround me in your peace as I surrender to You today.


When God Says No Will You Trust His Heart Today?

It is hard to be still and wait on God when things are hard.  When I feel I should be doing something or when I want something that feels like it should be mine.

It is hard to be still but God knows best.  Even when you can’t understand God’s hand in a situation, you can always trust God’s heart.

When God says no, His heart has our best interest in mind.  I can trust Him.  So can you.

Whatever it is that God said no about, can you surrender it today?

in HIM,

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Tiffany Montgomery

Tiffany of Hope Joy in Christ inspires Christian Women to grow in faith, live out Biblical Marriage Principles and raise Godly Children.  Join the Wives Only Facebook Group here or keep up with her through Pinterest.

15 thoughts to “When God Says No It’s Hard to Be Still”

  1. For me waiting is so hard! I’m the kind of person that wants all the answers right away, or I think I know what I want, but he knows what I need and when I need it.

  2. Good things to think about! I can take parts and incorporate into my day!

  3. It is never easy when God says no, but I love the tips you share here. Because when God says no, it’s always for the best.

  4. Life doesn’t always happen at the pace we desire. Patience is a great virtue to learn.

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