Don’t Give God the Silent Treatment

Winfred Neely
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The words “to God” are more significant than they seem. The directive to make our requests known to God does not mean that God was previously uninformed. He knows all things past, present, future, potential—completely and exhaustively. Tozer writes:

God knows instantly and effortlessly all matter and all matters, all mind and every mind, all spirit and all spirits, all being and every being, all creaturehood and all creatures, every plurality and all plurality, all law and every law, all relations, all causes, all thoughts, all mysteries, all enigmas, all feeling, all desires, every unuttered secret, all thrones and dominions, all personalities, all things visible, and invisible in heaven and in earth, motion, space, time, life, death, good, evil, heaven, and hell.[1]

But our God is not an omniscient computer or an infinite Mr. Spock. His omniscience is a caring omniscience. Tozer captures this well:

Our Father in heaven knows our frame and remembers that we are dust. He knew our inborn treachery, and for His own sake engaged to save us (Isa. 48:8–11). His only begotten Son, when He walked among us, felt our pains in their naked intensity of anguish. His knowledge of our afflictions and adversities is more than theoretic; it is personal, warm, and compassionate. Whatever may befall us, God knows and cares as no one else can.[2]

Our all-knowing heavenly Father wants us to trust Him and depend on Him. The fact that our Father already knows our needs and cares is a major incentive for believing prayer and trust in Him (Matt. 6:32–33). He wants us to talk to Him, sharing our hearts and needs and troubles with Him.

“Let’s not give God the silent treatment.”

When you take that final step onto an airplane, you are placing your life in the hands of the pilot, crew, and flight attendants. There is much that we may not understand about aviation, air currents, plane engines, and everything else involved in flying, but we buckle our seat belt and settle in for the flight as a matter of faith. Sometimes we fly through turbulence, and we feel the plane and ourselves shaking at the high altitude! If we need help or reassurances, we call on the flight attendant, and they help us. We trust that they can.

Similarly, prayer is one of the most vital expressions of our trust in and dependence on God. God our Father is the pilot! We are not just souls on the plane of faith; we are His children. By His grace and power, we will reach our destination: glory. He is also sovereign and all-powerful. He is in control of the turbulence, and every bit of turbulence that we feel on the flight of faith is either permitted or sent directly by Him for His glory and our good! We can, therefore, call on Him in faith. In faith, we tell Him about all of our worrisome problems and turbulent circumstances. We humble ourselves and give all our cares and worries to the Lord (1 Peter 5:7). Do you remember the words of the famous hymn?

What a Friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer![3]

This hymn reminds us of the privilege and benefit of carrying everything to the Lord in prayer. We see the same call to prayer in our key passage. Notice how the passage reads: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” Let’s not give God the silent treatment.

[1] A. W. Tozer, The Knowledge of the Holy (New York: HarperCollins, 1961), 56.

[2] Ibid., 57.

[3] Joseph M. Scriven, “What a Friend We Have in Jesus,” Hymns of the Christian Life (Camp Hill, PA: Christian Publications, 1978), 204.

For Further Reading:

How to Overcome Worry

by Dr. Winfred Neely

Do you struggle with worry or anxious thoughts on a regular basis? Does your mind get fixated on the same concern over and over? Do you know...

book cover for How to Overcome Worry