When they asked Him to explain more to them about prayer, Jesus told them this story:
"Suppose one of you shall have a friend, and shall go to him at midnight, and say to him, 'Friend, lend me three loaves; for a friend of mine has come to me from a journey, and I have nothing to set before him;' and from inside he shall answer and say, 'Do not bother me; the door has already been shut and my children and I are in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.' "I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will get up and give him as much as he needs. "And I say to you ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it shall be opened." (Luke 11:5-10)
The three keys Jesus gives for seeing answers to prayer can be summed up as: Be persistent, be purposeful and be personal.
Be Persistent......God wants us to hold on tightly to His promises in prayer. Don't let disappointment cause you to let go of your faith.
Be Purposeful .....God wants us to share our hearts with Him. Dare to ask God for your desires. Psalm 37:4
Be Personal ......The most important key to effective prayer is a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father. But remember, it takes time to develop a close friendship. You can start by involving God in the details of your life and learning to recognize His faithfulness even in little everyday challenges and events. Develop a plan of Bible reading and prayer that works for you. Pray for family and friends who may not know Jesus. And be sure to thank Him when the answers come!
What a comfort to know that God loves us so deeply that He has given each of us an "open line" directly to Him whenever we need direction, comfort or strength. And His continuing promise to us is that He will answer our prayers!