I learned a new word the other day that I want to share with you: impetration. Impetration is a prayer that God infallibly answers. The concept comes from such New Testament passages as this:
Ask and you will receive. Seek and you will find. Knock and the door will be opened to you.” (Mt. 7:7)
Now we know from experience that God does not answer every prayer. Or, as we like to say, He sometimes answers with a “no.” So where is the fulfillment of this verse?
St. Thomas Aquinas taught that there are four requirements for impetration:
- We must be praying for ourselves, since freewill is involved.
- We must be praying for something necessary for salvation (but theologians include in this all the goods that could help us grow in grace).
- We must pray piously–in Jesus’ name, with humility, trust, and attention.
- We must persevere in prayer when necessary.
So, it you are praying to be a saint, take heart! If you are praying to remain in God’s grace, trust He will answer. If you are praying to overcome a certain sin, depend on Him to see you through. If you persevere in such prayers, God will answer them with a “yes.” We have the promise of Christ that this is so.
4 thoughts on “The prayer God always answers”
Timely Connie. Of course we all know this already and yet we so need to be reminded especially when we have to persevere as the answer is delayed-seemingly on our end-but in truth is in God’s perfect timing. Bless you!
Bless you too, Mai Kate. Yes, our experience sometimes tempts us to doubt. But God remains faithful to His word if we persevere.
I would like to hope that God will answer the prayers we pray for the salvation of those we love like He did for St. Monica if we persevere…
I hope so too. But it involves the free will of another person, so it is more complicated.