If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (John 15:7)
Many years ago, when I was pastoring a church, I was praying about a certain thing. I was praying just like everyone else does - leaving it more up to God than me - and God just dropped the following illustration down into my heart:
One day after church, my wife discovers that the diamond out of the engagement ring I gave her is gone. She knows it was there before she left for church because she noticed it. The diamond must have fallen out somewhere between the parsonage and the church.
What do I do? I search for it. I go over the ground carefully and, if necessary, get down on my knees. I divide every blade of grass, going over the area carefully, because I know it has to be there somewhere.
Then I heard something on the inside of me say, "Similarly, it's in 'this' area that you're missing it in prayer." Do you know what I did? Spiritually speaking, I got down on my knees. I said, "It's in this area."
So I began looking in that area in my life where the Lord led me. I hadn't been looking very far when I said, "That's it right there! I found it! That's it!" And I never had to pray about that thing anymore. It just came into being. And I had been praying for days and weeks about the same thing.
The problem was not with God. Jesus said in John 15:7, "If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you." You see, whether or not your prayers are heard and answered rests more with you than it does with God.
If you want to always get answers to your prayers, abide in Him and let His words abide in you.
Confession I abide in Jesus and let His words abide in me; then I can ask what I will, and it shall be done unto me. This is how I receive answered prayers.
(Taken by permission from RHEMA Bible Church , aka Kenneth Hagin Ministries , Tulsa , OK , USA. www.rhema.org )