Welcome to the online home of Audra Jennings, a book publicist and crafter. Here I share about both. I hope you'll find books you'll want to read and crafts you will want to order. I live a rather boring, single life. At times I would like to think I am humorous. The kids I teach in Bible class tend to think so. I also blog about current seasons of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. I don't know why, I just do.
Do you ever feel like God is taking too long to answer
your prayers? Have you ever taken matters into your own hands, only to discover
that you’ve made the situation worse?
new four-week Bible study, I’m Waiting, God, (Abingdon Press) Barb Roose
invites us to explore the stories of women in the Bible who had to wait on God.
If you’ve felt anxious, angry, discouraged or depressed because God isn’t
giving you what you want, their stories will breathe fresh hope and practical
next steps in your life. As a reforming control lover, Barb mixes in her
personal stories of learning how to wait for God during long seasons of
unanswered prayers, family difficulties, and challenging times in ministry.
Together readers will discover that there is goodness and blessing to be found
in times of waiting, including a closer relationship with God than they’ve ever
dared to dream.
women from the Bible do you use as examples for women who grappled with
Hannah wondered if God loved her or
had forgotten about her.
Ruth’s life took a tragic and
The unnamed bleeding woman suffered
for over a decade with an embarrassing medical condition.
Martha prayed, but God said “no” to
would you say to encourage someone who feels as if God has forgotten her or
doesn’t love her because her prayers have gone unanswered?
would sit down with her and ask to give her a big hug. Living with unanswered
prayer is hard—especially when we’re praying for good things, like a baby, a
spouse, a clean bill of health or for a struggling child to get back on track.
give advice or tell someone to “buck up,” I believe an overwhelmed, discouraged
woman needs what Tim Keller calls “the ministry of presence.” When someone
feels the pain of unanswered prayer, she doesn’t need advice, but rather
listening, love and reassurance.
Some of my
favorite go-to encouraging statements when hanging out with a friend who is
struggling are: “Tell me how you’re really doing,” “I know that you are doing
the best that you can!” and “You are loved and you aren’t alone.”
Q: What are
some of the reasons the Bible gives for God not answering prayers?
The Bible reveals numerous reasons God delays
in answering our prayers. Some of those include:
God might not answer because of our unforgiveness, secret sin, pride, or wrong motives.
God wants to protect us from harm or heartache down the road.
God is allowing more time to pass so that we’ll have the chance to see His
power on display in our lives.
God allows a delay to teach us to trust Him in the hard place and develop
persistence in prayer.
God may delay the answer to your prayer because He’s working in someone else’s
Q: When an
unexpected event throws life off course, what do you pray for when you don’t
know what to pray?
A few years
ago, my dad got sick. In just a few weeks, he’d lost more than 30 pounds off
his athletic frame. A biopsy revealed advanced metastasized lung cancer and
doctors told us that Dad only had a few days to live. At the time, I’d been on
the road speaking and half-way through writing a new book, but the news that I
was about to lose my beloved dad upended my entire life.
devastating moments, I rely on praying God’s promises. In the hardest moments,
I don’t know what to say, but God’s promises give me life and hope—even when
I’m numb or not even sure if I can believe them in the moment.
In the study,
I’ve included one of my favorite rituals, a tool that I call the
“God-Morning/God-Night Technique” that’s gotten me through a lot of hard and
heartbreaking days. Basically, I repeat five of God’s promises before I open my
eyes and begin the day. By starting with a “God-morning,” with his promises, I
can beat back the feelings of fear, uncertainty and impatience by reminding
myself that God is with me and for me not matter what I’ll face that day.
Q: How can
we protect ourselves from bitterness during our wait?
Waiting, God, I explain bitterness like this: “Bitterness is the story that
blames God for the pain in our past. Better is the story that believes God will
be faithful in the future.”
always begins small, but the more we repeat the stories of how God or others
hurt or betrayed us, we begin to believe that is the story of our lives—and the
story of our future. I watched my grandmother nearly die of bitterness after my
grandfather’s affair when I was a little girl. She spent a lot of time in the
hospital before finally confronting her bitterness and changing her story.
gratitude is the antibiotic that kills any little bitter roots in my life. Each
day of the I’m Waiting, God study features a gratitude exercise. Just
taking a moment to reflect on God’s blessing not only kills little roots of
disappointment, rejection or regret that could grow into bitterness, but also
uplifts our hearts and gives us joy, even as we’re waiting for God to answer
Q: Is there
ever a time to let a prayer go? How do you know when it’s the right time, after
weeks, months, or maybe even years?
This is a
hard question because there’s no easy answer to this question. On one hand,
we’re instructed to pray continually (1 Thessalonians 5:17), but we also know
that there is a starting and ending to all things (Ecclesiastes 3). The point
of prayer is to authentically connect ourselves to God so that his Spirit can
lead and guide us. However, as circumstances change, there are times when it is
no longer safe, wise or life-giving for us to pursue certain situations.
years, I prayed for God to save my marriage. I’d made a commitment before God
over 25 years before, and I believed God could do the impossible. I fasted and
prayed for years for God to restore a relationship that addiction had
destroyed. Even after I had to move out of my home because of the issues, I
still kept believing and praying for restoration and healing.
It’s hard to
pray for years when nothing seems to be happening. I received some great
encouragement from a wise friend: “You pray until you sense God releasing you
from that prayer.”
to pray until I realized that it was no longer safe or wise for me to go back
into that situation. I didn’t give up on God, nor did I stop believing in his almighty
power. But I did realize that it was time to shift from praying for what I
wanted to praying for God to help me let go and trust His plan for my future,
even though it wasn’t what I wanted.
To help me
let go of the pain, disappointment and anger, I use a tool that I call my
annual “funeral.” This is fully explained in the final week of the study, but
it’s a tool to help me let go my anger, disappointments and fears. This funeral
process helps me surrender my unanswered prayers to God so that my heart and
hands are open for Him to bring new direction, opportunities and blessing into
Q: How is I’m
Waiting, God: Finding Blessing in God’s Delays, your new Bible study, set
up to be used? What other resources are available?
As a Bible study teacher who loves creating experiences for women in
every season of life, I’m excited that I’m Waiting, God is
designed with a flexible format to fit everyone’s schedule. This is a four-week
study, and each week offers three days of Bible study homework, plus two
optional days for more personal reflection to be enjoyed as time or energy
I believe that
application is a key component of effective Bible study, so I’ve created weekly
personal reflection exercises and practical tools. Additionally, each day’s
study includes a daily
gratitude exercise and lots of life-transforming scripture to set readers up to
experience a-ha moments so they can see and experience God’s blessing, even as
they’re waiting on God to answer their prayer.
For those who like
video, there is a separate teaching DVD for each of the four weeks. Best of
all, anyone can lead a group study because the facilitator’s guide is been
included in the study workbook.
One more bonus! If
readers would like additional encouragement, they can sign up for “The Patience
Path,” a 30-day email devotional that I’ve created to go along with the study.
To sign up, go to barbroose.com/patiencepath.