Why the answer to prayer is delayed.
Ah! many earnest suppliants wail forth prayers, till the smoke of their wailing rises to Heaven. Yes, the perfume of the incense of sinners’ groans mounts up above the lofty roof of Heaven. Then the angels supplicate God, saying, “O Thou that hearest prayer and relievest pain, Thy faithful slave is bowing down before Thee. He knows of none on whom to rely save Thee. Thou bestowest favours on the helpless. Every suppliant obtains his desire from Thee.” God makes answer, “The delay in granting his prayer is intended to benefit him, not to harm him. His pressing need draws him from his negligence to Me. Yes,
from Mathnawi, Book VI
Painting – ‘Prayer on the House Top’ by Jean Leon Gerome