I asked, what happened?
In more than one scripture verse the suggestion is announced that to ask the Father in my name and he will answer your request. (Mt. 7: 7 - 8). “You do not possess because you do not ask.” (Jas 4: 3).
Watching certain TV evangelists who promote praying in order to believe and it will be answered. All of these create a hope type of ministry that if we are constant in our belief these answers to our deepest needs will be fulfilled by God. If we were to project the idea of hope as a false request it would appear as heresy. Simply because Jesus for one insisted on this following the Sermon on the Mount, the proclamation of the kingdom, we have no reason to disbelieve this.
“You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, you spend it on your passions. If we ask with a divided heart, we are adulterers. (a lover of the world). God cannot answer us, for he desires our wellbeing, our life. Or do you suppose that it is in vain that the scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit which he has made to dwell in us?” That our God is jealous for us is the sign of how true his love is. If we enter into the desire of his Spirit, we shall be heard. (CCC 2737).
Do not be troubled if you do not immediately receive from God what you ask him; for he desires to do something even greater for you, while you cling to him in prayer. (see CCC 2737)
“God wills that our desires should be exercised in prayer, that we may be able to receive what he has promised to give.” (St. Augustine).
“Prayer is a vital necessity. Proof from the contrary is no less convincing: if we do not allow the Spirit to lead us, we fall back into the slavery of sin. How can the Holy Spirit be our life if our heart is far from him?” (CCC 2744).
“Nothing is equal to prayer; for what is impossible it makes possible, what is difficult, easy…For it is impossible, utterly impossible, for the man who prays eagerly and invokes God ceaslessly ever to sin.” (St. John Chrysostom).
“He prays without ceasing” who unites prayer to works and good works to prayer. Only in this way can we consider as realizable the principal of praying without ceasing.” (Origen).
Two frequent temptations threaten prayer: lack of faith and acedia - a form of depression stemming from lax ascetical practice that leads to discouragement. (Taken from “In Brief) CCC 2755). (Ascetical theology - an organized study of spiritual teachings in scripture). Acedia - is spiritual or mental sloth, empathy.
Ralph B. Hathaway