"I think most people mistake prayer with receiving an answer." - Words of a student of mine, a sophomore, when I asked him about his faith life.Show Comments ( 1 )Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.Bruce Snowden4 years agoWell, PETITION is one of the FOUR forms of prayer, the other three ADORATION, THANKSGIVING, REPARATION. I agree with your student, that most often we tend to think that praying is all about receiving an answer but it's not. Yet it is, for even when the answer says "No" it is still an answer. Once in a homily on prayer I heard the priest say that there are four ways that God answer prayer - #1 NO, which is an answer, #2, SLOW, in other words what's your hurry? God's time is the right time, #3, GROW, meaning Grow up, do you really know what you're asking for? and #4, GO! You have it, now go out and proclaim the good news! This makes sense to me. Prayer is always answered and of course there are many ways that God answers prayer, not just FOUR ways. But I think that the Prayer of Adoration is the highest form of prayer and must be the first part of any prayer offered, then Thanksgiving must also be included, then Reparation for one's personal sins, or the sins of others. Within these first THREE the Prayer of Petition resides, drawing potency from Adoration, Thanksgiving and Reparation. In short and far less complicated than the above is the simple words that belong in every prayer, Sacred Heart of Jesus I place my TRUST in you, leaving the rest to God to work on the yes, no, when, how. God's Will rules all prayer as it should - there is no other way. This is where and how the baptismal and Confirmationsl Gift of Understanding is activated, illumined in the quiet satisfaction of another Gift, Wisdom!