I am curious as to what I'm supposed to pray about. I continuously pray that I'll grow to be 6 foot or 6 foot 1, but I always end up not trusting God properly. People tell me that I need to believe it'll happen and pray specifically. I'd like to know if there is anything I'm doing wrong and what I should do to make it better.

Suppose a thirty year old man who was five foot tall earnestly prayed to become six foot tall, what would you think of that man? Would you expect God to answer his prayer?

It is unfortunate that so many people treat God like a cosmic vending machine where you insert the proper prayers and out pops whatever you ask -- regardless of whether what you are requesting is reasonable or not. It is wrong because it holds the wrong view of God. God is not at man's beck and call to grant our every desire. People may ask, but it is God who determines what is in our best interest. We look at our immediate desires, but God considers what we need for our life. Paul suffered with an affliction which he asked God to remove, but Paul was turned down! "And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong" (II Corinthians 12:7-10). It is not that Paul prayed in the wrong way or without enough faith. Paul realized that his suffering, as annoying as it was, served a purpose in keeping him from becoming too prideful. Rather than grip about it, he rejoiced in God's care for him.

James scolds people who pray for the wrong reason. "You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures" (James 4:3). While God doesn't necessarily what us to be unhappy, He doesn't give us things just because we want them. The universe exists at His good pleasure and we are here to serve His purpose. "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man's all" (Ecclesiastes 12:13). So, consider your motivation. Why to do you want to be taller? If I poked at the issue with you, do you suppose that at the bottom of it there is an issue of pride? You see others who are taller than you and you are envious of the attention they get because of their height? If such is the case, why would God fulfill such a request, even if it was asked in all faith?

Imagine its the holidays and a child finds ten presents waiting for him. Each is a wondrous gift, but the child had really wanted a new bicycle and none of the presents was a bicycle. He then walks off pouting because he didn't get the one thing he wanted. Wouldn't the child's ingratitude annoy his parents? Especially if they had decided not to give him a bicycle because there was no safe place for him to ride it where they were living? What we need to learn to do is thank God for the blessing He has given to us. And if you start numbering them you will not be able to count multitude that you have already received in your life. Yet all of that is being thrown away because there is one thing you want that God decided not to give you. We all need to be thankful for what we do have instead of finding misery in what we don't have.

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Questions and Answers regarding Prayer