The true son-faith is that which comes with boldness, fearless of the Father doing anything but what is right, fatherly, patient, and full of loving-kindness. We must not think to please him by any asceticism even of the spirit; we must speak straight out to him.
“But if God is so good, and if he knows all that we need, and better far than we do ourselves, why should it be necessary to ask him for anything?” I answer, What if he knows prayer to be the thing we need first and most? What if the main object in God’s idea of prayer be the supplying of our great, our endless need—the need of himself?
If a man be not fit to be refused, if he be not ready to be treated with love’s severity, what he wishes may perhaps be given him in order that he may wish it had not been given him; but barely to give a man what he wants because he wants it, and without further purpose of his good, would be to let a poor ignorant child take his fate into his own hands.