The sages ask, "Why were our forefathers unable to have children?" and the reply is given, "because God desires to hear the prayers of the righteous." It was only through long periods of waiting, anticipating, and hungering that the substance of their hope was realized, just as it was only through groaning of heart that their faith was made sure.
It is said that "the deeds of the fathers are signs for the children," meaning that the narratives of the Bible serve as parables or allegories for us. Therefore Paul wrote that when Abraham was declared righteous because of his faith, it was not for his sake alone, but for all who likewise earnestly trust that God will keep His promises (Rom. 4:20-25).
We see this pattern over and over again in Scripture. For instance, God waited until His people were "out of breath" from oppression before he initiated the great Exodus from Egypt (Exod. 2:23; 6:5-9), just as He waited until they were forced to cry out for deliverance before they could cross the Sea of Reeds (Exod. 14:10). It was only after they realized they were entirely out of options that the people lifted their eyes and cried out to Him. Some of the sages say that God sent Pharaoh's army to pursue Israel so that He could save them as a "knight in shining armor" rescues a maiden crying out in distress.
Our verse says that the LORD fulfills the desire of those who fear Him, and He hears the screams of those who cry out for salvation. The question may be asked, if God constantly fulfills the desire of the godly, then why is it necessary to save them? Why are they often forced to cry out for help? The answer is that God desires to hear their voice so that they may know him as their Deliverer and only Savior. The LORD may engineer trouble in our lives so that we will "keep asking, keep seeking, keep knocking." The door of blessing will be opened to us through perseverance of heart. "For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened" (Matt. 7:8).
An old Jewish prayer, uttered wistfully, begins, "O Lord, I know that Thou wilt help us; but wilt Thou help us before Thou wilt help us?" Where it is written, "hope to the LORD, be strong and strengthen your heart, and (again) hope to the LORD" (Psalm 27:14), we see that hope gives inward strength. The repetition of the phrase "hope to the LORD means that as you earnestly trust in Him, God Himself imparts His strength to you.
May you cry out to Him in heartfelt hope this very hour... Amen.