Last Friday, I wrote about Daniel's answer to prayer. My mother reminded me of another instance of Daniel needing the answer to prayer alittle further down.
In Daniel 10, Daniel was having another burdensome dream. This dream was so disturbing, he didn't eat or drink for three weeks! On the 24th day, he was standing on the banks of the Tigris River when he was met by the angel (the scripture doesn't name the angel, but one gets the indication it was Gabriel again). Seeing the angel before him was apparently a frightening sight because the other two friends with Daniel were terrorized and they ran away.
The angel tells Daniel in verse 12, "...your words were heard and I came in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia."
Gabriel was being hindered by a stubborn Persian ruler who was either demonic or human. Remember, angels aren't all-powerful, like God, but they were fighting this battle for Daniel. It was so bad, the angel Michael came to help fight it. Personally, I believe this was a spiritual fight in which a demon assigned to Persia was trying to keep Gabriel from getting his message (or answer to his vision) to Daniel. It took Gabriel 21 days (or 3 weeks) to get to Daniel!
It took me a long time to realize the battles I encounter on this earth are spiritual in nature. Some of the simplest things (battle to lose weight, battle to think positive about someone, battle to forgive, battle to say 'no' when my plate is already full of obligations, the battle to respond kindly when viewers make ugly comments about me), are battles in the spiritual realm. And sometimes our prayers aren't answered because they are being held back by demonic forces. But oh, friend, that's when God steps in deals the final blow to those things that are holding our answers back. Ephesians 6:12 puts it like this, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." What are the 'spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms'? Satan and his co-horts of demons.
I don't think this is the reason why all prayers are not answered, but I do believe it is a reason why some aren't. So if there is an answer to prayer you've been looking for, pray that God would not allow it to be hindered any longer