"Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words."
Do you ever feel like your most desperate prayers to God often go unheard and unanswered? They don't, of course, if you are praying in line with God's will as revealed in His Word. And even when we pray out of His will, a loving God still hears and works to bring us to an understanding of what's best for us and others.
But look at Daniel's prayers that preceded those beautiful words of assurance from the messenger from heaven. Daniel was so broken-hearted over Israel's sin against God that he prayed as if he alone was responsible: "And while I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel..." (9:20) A broken heart for the lost will always touch the Savior who came to seek the lost. A heart wounded over sin - his own as well as those around him - will always bring a response from the One who had to die in order to crush sin forever. Like Daniel, we won't get all of our answers immediately - time must have a chance to test our faith - but we can be sure that we have God's ear.
Get away from all the "gim-mee prayers" that cater only to self. Let others be the focus of your prayers as you cry out for your family, friends, city, state, nation and world. God calls us to partner with Him through intercession (determined praying) for a lost world, a lost Israel and, pretty much, a lost Church that grasps the material but has lost its grasp on God. You can be sure that with such prayers will come the Holy Spirit's assurance that "thy words were heard!"
"Forgive me, Father, for my tendency to laziness in prayer. Put Your burdens on my heart, keep them on my mind, and cause me to lift them before You in my spirit."