[quote="k5thbeatle, post:1, topic:310684"]
"...and receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his commands and do what pleases him."
Well Ok, I know NOT anything we ask for, but here is a serious question I received from a friend that I didn't quite know how to answer. First a little quick background. My friend has been struggling greatly financially, I won't go into all the details for brevity. Now I know this guy to be a solid person and devout Catholic myself. I was almost brought to tears myself when I last spoke with him earlier today. He quoted the above verse from todays readings and said he's at his wits end as to why God doesn't show him a way out of his current financial mess. He was almost in tears when he told me he has tried so hard to be the best person he can be by trying to live as a devout catholic (trust me when I say it was a tear jerking moment) and living the teachings of the church and Jesus. Yet, as he put it, he asks for a way out yet his troubles go on? I honestly didn't know how to anser him. But in such a context as todays reading how does one answer someone like this obviously sincerely confused by it all?
I know how he feels and I've come to realize that no matter what hardships we face and that OUR prayers aren't answered the way we would like, we must never get discouraged, but remain faithful that God is with us and hears us always, His time is not our time, and in time, your friend will get financially better. He may not be "rich" but he will be better off. If God's own Son was poor and homeless (remember He was born in a "barn" and never owned His own home), and it is good enough for Jesus, then it is good enough for us too. Being a devout Catholic does not necessarily mean we attain the riches and wealth of this world, but that we attain the riches and wealth that are forever: Unwaivering faith in God no matter what. Some very devout Christians have been homeless, hungry, ill, etc. and that had no basis on their devoution to God. These hardships are just trials that will hopefully hone our faith in and our love for God just as those trials and terrible hardships Job went through proved to be. Job is such an inspiration!!
In Scripture, we have to take things in context. When we pray, we are to ask "according to God's will"
John 6:40 NRSA
This is indeed the will of my Father, that all who see the Son and believe in him may have eternal life; and I will raise them up on the last day."
John 16:23 NRSA
On that day you will ask nothing of me. Very truly, I tell you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you.
Hebrews 2:4 NRSA
while God added his testimony by signs and wonders and various miracles, and by gifts of the Holy Spirit, distributed according to his will.
1 John 5:14 NRSA
And this is the boldness we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.
Philippians 4:19 NRSA
And my God will fully satisfy every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
This is my prayer for your friend:
16 I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, 17 and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love. 18 I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. 20 Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Blessings of our Lord