Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full. (Jesus, John 16.24, ESV)
When prayer comes with difficulty, it can help to have a plan. F.B. Meyer comments on this passage spoken by Jesus:
The lack of joy in Christian hearts may often be traced to a failure discern the difference between the prayer which is only supplication, and that which takes its guerdon from the outstretched hand of Jesus. Too often our prayers seem like lost vessels; when, in point of fact, they have come to the quays richly freighted, but we have not been there to claim our own. Perhaps these rules may assist you to acquire this blessed art:
- Be sure that what you ask is according to the mind of God, offered in some promise or precept of Holy Scripture.
- Ask for it simply and reverently. Use the name of Jesus; that is, stand in Him, and plead for His glory.
- Dare to believe that God does hear and answer your prayer altogether apart from the flow of emotion, or the rapture of conscious possession.
- Go your way and reckon that God is faithful. Count on Him as bound to keep His truth.