“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.” –Matthew 7:12
Both Jesus (Luke 18:1) and Paul (1 Tim. 2:1) emphasized the importance of prayer, noting that people ought always to pray. Prayer includes asking and getting answers from God. But it is more than just asking; it is confession, adoration, thanksgiving, and fellowship with God.
By its nature, prayer is talking with God. It is the basis of the successful Christian life, and is so important that not praying is considered a sin (1 Sam. 12:23). When we pray, we should follow the model prayer Jesus gave His disciples and address it to our heavenly Father—beginning with adoration, including thanksgiving and confession of sins, making reconciliation with others, praying for our needs and the needs of others, and concluding in Jesus’ name (Matthew 6:9–15; John 14:14).
Illustration: Jesus pointed out that God heard the prayer of a humble publican rather than that of a proud Pharisee (Luke 18:14).
Application: God will answer our prayer when we obey Him (1 John 3:22), confess sin (Ps. 66:18), abide in Christ (John 15:7), ask according to the will of God (1 John 5:14), ask in faith (Mark 11:24), have pure motives (James 4:3), and live peaceably with our mate (1 Pet. 3:7).