After all the veiled insults on the first page it gets down to a single response:
"There is another verse that isn't oft cited that provides a skosh of insight into why a prayer might seemingly have gone unanswered. Romans 8:26-27 provides that insight, noting that we're not actually sure what we really need to be praying about, and that the Spirit (of God) interprets it correctly for us. For instance, if I were to ask in prayer, "God, give me a million dollars." I think that (had you known, you'd might soon after asking recall the stipulation of praying "in his name" and his name isn't "God", plus Christ also chastises a few newbs by retorting, "Why do you call me Lord but don't do what I say?" ..something to think about) a reasonable Spirit-translation might instead be, "Help me to realize how rich I already am," "Help me to appreciate living efficiently," or "Help me to realize that I am neither Aladdin, nor are you some two-bit genie that must obey me, since I dutifully read the entire verse without getting bored." Don't you suppose that God, in his bountiful wisdom, would actually not grant me this prayer, firstly, knowing that I would probably just go blow it all on multiflavor, individually wrapped chunks of saltwater taffy and stockpile a collection of Morning Musume DVDs? By instilling some kind of filtering system, the deeper, inner question could be answered and cancel out the need for such a desire to even warrant asking in the first place (but you don't get that, unless you ask =P).."
But it consists largely of a strawman and an argument from personal incredulity. No one is suggesting prayer being answered is one of frivolous material needs, yet that's exactly the analogy this person goes with for pretty obvious emotional reasons. His rejection of the entire case can be summed up as a rejection from his own personal incredulity and nothing else. We can easily surmise a prayer that benefits all equally, the only way around it is to insert an arbitrary 'greater purpose' as the reason authentic prayers of need go unanswered. The problem with a 'greater purpose' is that it is simply another red herring, since we can always suppose conditions that can be attained for the greater purpose without any conditional context coming before it. IE The greater purpose can be had 'instantly'.
Actually, I do, in fact, have something to say right here!
Omen, your point is exceptionally well stated. We need to explore the question, "If God 'desires' His greater purpose and He's all-powerful, then what is He waiting for?" It's been explored. It was this question that led to the (IMO, ridiculous) Calvinist doctrine of pre-destination--If God wants you saved, then he saves you and there's not much else to talk about. I'm paraphrasing, of course, but it logically follows. If God is all-powerful, then human free will has a serious problem.
John Polkinghorne says, "The well-known free will defence in relation to moral evil asserts that a world with a possibility of sinful people is better than one with perfectly programmed machines. The tale of human evil is such that one cannot make that assertion without a quiver, but I believe that it is true nevertheless. I have added to it the free-process defence, that a world allowed to make itself is better than a puppet theatre with a Cosmic Tyrant. I think that these two defences are opposite sides of the same coin, that our nature is inextricably linked with that of the physical world which has given us birth."
I have a similar view influenced by my own Mormon background. I believe that God is working a much greater work than anything visible here. His stated purpose is to make us perfect--perfectly loving, perfectly strong, and perfectly able to live according to the precepts we believe. A world brimming over with evil--that i,s opportunities to choose cruelty and selfishness--is the only place to gain such strength.
But, the question is still, "What is he waiting for?" If He can heal our physical maladies instantly and with ease, why not just create us perfect in the first place? My bold statement is this: When it comes to humans, God is not all-powerful. We are a different kind of thing--begotten and not created by God. God cannot create us perfect and whole without letting us pass through sorrow and sin. You are not clay.
With Polkinghorne, I "quiver" to state that the suffering in the world is toward some good. Easy to state in the abstract, but harder to swallow in the face of actual, specific suffering. It's a little easier when you immerse yourself in a spiritual world view. For me, its much more consistent to consider earthly suffering in the context of an eternal afterlife. This life is very short when compared with eternity. In that sense, earthly suffering is (quivering here) like your football coach pushing you through wind sprints to strengthen you for what lies ahead. Hard, yes, but temporary.