"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." These words were uttered by Christ Jesus in his Sermon on the Mount centuries ago, and since that time countless thousands accepting this promise have asked and received of God abundant blessings.
Many, however, in seeking for that which seemed so necessary for their well-being, have met with apparently little or no reward. This in no wise detracts from the truth of the promise, for the fact that many have proved, and are today proving, these words of Jesus to be practical, shows that they must be and are correct. Indeed, he would not have spoken them were it otherwise. Every statement and promise voiced by the Master is provable, when spiritually understood. If, then, any Christian seeker finds no response to his prayer, it surely indicates that his concept of asking needs to be raised above reliance upon mere human belief into spiritual understanding, for the promise plainly reads, "every one." It does not say a favored few, but that "every one that asketh" shall receive. Then, in order to receive we must learn how to ask, how to pray. The door of spiritual receptivity must be opened by enlightened discernment.
In "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" Mary Baker Eddy says (p. 2,) "The mere habit of pleading with the divine Mind, as one pleads with a human being, perpetuates the belief in God as humanly circumscribed,—an error which impedes spiritual growth." The prayer that would flatter or cajole, or the prayer that asks in fear and trembling, and declares that the supplicant will be satisfied with a bare pittance, is not a true prayer to God, but is neither more nor less than a petition to a god of the human imagination who gives or withholds according to his whim. Such so-called prayer, however well-intentioned, must always bring forth the result of its mistaken asking, even unsatisfied effort, for it can never reach "the great heart of Love" (ibid., p. 448) and partake of the outpouring of infinite supply.