About two months after moving into our home in Virginia, my daughter spotted a mouse while sitting in my office upstairs.
My husband broke the news to me and I wanted to make sure she wasn’t just seeing things.
“Did you actually see a mouse or something out the corner of your eye?” I hoped.
“Ok, could it have been a big bug?” I inquired. “Maybe you were just sleepy.”
All of my attempts to reason away the possibility of a mouse being in my house, not to mention MY office, were dismissed.
My husband clearly let me know that getting rid of this mouse was my job. After all, I had ridded our home of an entire family of these rodents when he was deployed to Afghanistan several years prior.
I was not going to allow a mouse to live in my house, so I promptly set two traps–one in the attic and one in the kitchen– where I too had seen a mouse late one night.
One afternoon after walking up the stairs to get sleeping bags for a camping trip, what do I see, a slain mouse! I was so excited!
The second trap in the kitchen didn’t prove to be so successful. I was discouraged after waking up several mornings to an empty mousetrap. I figured that it was not secluded enough, so I moved it from the kitchen to underneath the stairs in the garage and forgot about it.
Several days (or weeks) later, my daughter was putting on her shoes and said, “Mom, we caught a mouse.”
I was so shocked that I went to look myself and surely, dominion had occurred again! I was thrilled!
Afterwards, my mind went to prayer. I thought about how often we pray prayers and forget about them. The Bible says that before we ask, God will answer (Isaiah 65:24). Our Father intimately knows our thoughts and desires and He wants to give us what we truly want.
This brings me to a desire I had several years ago while my husband was still in the Army. I had heard of a few people’s wonderful experiences with being stationed in Germany. While speaking with a friend who spoke of the unity shared among her friends while she was in Germany, I exclaimed out loud, “I want to go to Germany too!”
I never remember praying about it, but the Lord heard me and knew my desire. A few years later my husband comes home and tells me that we had an opportunity to go to Germany. We took it, and we went! It took me by surprise and it definitely happened a lot sooner than I had expected. I am so grateful for the opportunity to live overseas.
Getting back to leaving the trap out, although I didn’t intentionally pray about going to Germany, I’m so glad that I didn’t negate my desire with words of discouragement, doubt or unbelief.
“Oh well, we’ll probably never go to Germany. We are just not that lucky.”
No, “I left the trap out,” and “caught” my answer to prayer. The Bible says for a man that wavers in his mind not to expect to receive anything from the Lord (James 1:6-8). In other words, if he believes one day and doubts the next, he won’t receive anything. It also says that whatsoever things we ask in prayer, believe that we will receive them and we will (Matthew 21:22).
New York Times bestselling author Mark Batterson said in his book, The Circle Maker, that our prayers are like our tears that God collects in His bottle (Psalm 56:8). He wrote:
“Your life is in His hands, and your prayers are in His bottle. And like a message in a bottle, your prayers are carried by the current of His sovereign will. When and where they will land no one knows. But those bottled prayers will be unsealed in God’s time, in God’s way.”
This encourages me tremendously! God wants to answer our prayers, but we must believe that He wants to give us the desires of our hearts that are in accordance to His will. We must not let negative thoughts and words keep us from receiving what God wants us to have. Sometimes it takes a lot of work, and sometimes it just takes us putting the prayer out and later catching the mouse.