But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
– James 1:6-8 (NIV)
by Dave Whitehead, Author of Making Sense of the Bible
Prayer can refine our true motives, because prayer (or the lack of prayer) exposes what we truly believe. The apostle James lets us know what he has discovered; that prayer without concrete faith profits him nothing. We must believe that God hears what we pray, then we are to live in the assurance that God will respond faithfully to our requests.