“We know that prayer flows from our relationship with God. This is why it is impossible to reduce prayer to a set of rules or a formula. But we can draw out some basic principles to help develop our prayer relationship with God. Remember, these are pointers, not rules.
God wants us to ask. James 4:2 & John 16:24 show the importance of asking God. This is the prayer of petition, or supplicatory prayer. We must ask him. So often we try to work out everything in our minds and rely on our human ability. We must ask our heavenly Father instead.
Some people are slow to ask God because they have a false picture of God. They see him as a grudging figure who is rather distant. How false! He desires to give us good things and exhorts us to ask him. One of the saddest ideas some have about true Christianity is the notion that God is not friendly of favourably disposed toward people. The truth is that we can come to Jesus Christ directly. He intercedes for us and lovingly represents us before our heavenly Father.
Imagine all the things that God is ready to give us, and think what could happen if we would only ask him. Where would we be? Who would we be? If we found our children stealing fifty pence from us we would be hurt, because we know that they only have to ask and we would give it to them. How much more so in our relationship with our heavenly Father?” (From: Colin Dye, Effective Prayer, 2007, 133-134)