When to stop praying

When are you supposed to stop praying for a petition? I know the story of the Widow and the Unjust Judge that says we are supposed to keep praying for a request and I know that we are supposed to pray without ceasing but what exactly does that mean? I pray all the time for this certain petition like nonstop and I ask God to accept His will when I pray it or to at least want to accept His will. But I still keep feeling the need to keep pray for it constantly a part of it I think is because I am afraid of not showing God how badly I want this. Should there be a limit on how often I should pray for this throughout the day? How do I know when God will want me to stop asking for this?

God knows you better than you know yourself. You don’t need to keep praying any particular prayer/petition because God already knows your heart and your mind.

It sounds like this one partition has become something of an obsession for you. I would discuss with a trusted priest how you should proceed from here - whether this partition is reasonable to keep persisting with, or whether it has become an unhealthy obsession and something to put aside.

When prayer becomes difficult, just revert back to the Our Father. That prayer is always sufficient in itself.

You state that, This is something you badly want. I ask, is it something you actually need.
I genuinely believe that every prayer is answered, so I only pray for what is needed here once.
I genuinely believe that if I ask my parents for a coat because I am truly cold,
they would take off their own and gladly give it to me. but if I wanted a coat for a fashion statement, well…
My mother might give me her coat with pretty in pink emblazoned on its exterior and lace frills around the edges,
if I am in genuine need I would gladly accept it to warm myself.
If I am not, then I might reject the help and feel my pleas have not been listened to.
I might ask God to deal with my annoying neighbours because I don’t know how to.
and the answer to my prayer might be that he sends me even more annoying neighbours so that I might learn how to deal with them.
I guess what I’m saying is, if you trust completely that your prayers will be answered,
by God in God’s way, then you only need ask Him once.

Hope this was of some help.

1 Like

Well this is something I want because I think it will better myself. I’m just confused partially because of that parable The Persistent Widow where it says we are supposed to keep asking God. If we’re not supposed to keep asking then what is the point of a novena? Don’t you think that by suffering and asking God for something it also brings us closer to Him by forcing ourselves to turn to Him?

Ask someone who is truly holy to pray for you. Then you prayer has a good chance.

This is one reason we turn to Mary who is the holiest saint in heaven being the mother of God.

But the more holy people you have praying for you the better the prayer will be answered.

The other thing that makes a prayer powerful is if the person who is praying is thoughtful of other people and not thinking of only themselves. For instance, those who give most of their prayers to help sinnners come back, or for those in purgatory, or for other people in bad situations. When they do this, which the religious do, then when they ask for something infrequently for themselves, it has a good chance of being granted.

Another important point about strength in prayer is thanksgiving. It is imperative that we always tell Jesus how grateful and appreciative we are when he does even the smallest thing for us. Always thank him because he deserves it. This makes a big difference to him. And if you think about it, it makes a big difference to us don’t you think?

Are we always faithful to our prayers in other ways or is it just when we want something? That is important as well, for if this is done, then it means we just don’t think of Jesus as someone important when we want something, and not important at other times.

St. Catherine of Siena comes to mind as an example. Her reputation at the time she was living was well know to be holy. One priest who had a possessed person coming to him for help, sent him to St. Catherine. Tho she was not an exorcist, thru her strong prayers for this person, the demon left.

There are so many ways that set someone up for prayers being answered especially when he sees what is in our heart.

May God bless and keep you.

Interesting post and I don’t know the answer. I pray for wisdom and help to know His will every day. I think the answer might pertain to whether your prayer is related to a material need vs. a prayer that brings you closer to God? Whatever the prayer is, though, He always hears us and answers us (so I believe) but the answer may be “no” by virtue of what we want not occurring.

It would be hard to answer if you are paying for a thing or position or something like that. If you are praying for your or another’s spiritual good I would quit praying when I drew my last breath.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.