Prayer takes on many forms, and those forms are found in the Bible, and have been lived in the lives of those who loved God throughout the centuries. These forms are still the standard ways of prayer we find and use today: Praise & Adoration, Intercession, Petition, and Thanksgiving. Thank you for visiting our site - we hope you will find some helpful tips on prayer to encourage you in your own prayer life.
Therese Martin lived in France in the 1800's. She entered a Carmelite convent and died at the young age of 24. We know her today at St. Therese of Lisieux, the joyfully exuberant Doctor of the Church, who wrote in simple terms about prayer: "For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy." And so it is!
Christian teaching echoes the words of this young Saint in the following from the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
"Prayer is the raising of one's mind and heart to God or the requesting of good things from God. But when we pray, do we speak from the height of our pride and will, or out of the depths of a humble and contrite heart? He who humbles himself will be exalted; humility is the foundation of prayer, Only when we humbly acknowledge that we do not know how to pray as we ought, are we ready to receive freely the gift of prayer. Man is a beggar before God.
"If you knew the gift of God!" [referring to Jesus and the Samaritan Woman] The wonder of prayer is revealed beside the well where we come seeking water: there, Christ comes to meet every human being. It is he who first seeks us and asks us for a drink. Jesus thirsts; his asking arises from the depths of God's desire for us. Whether we realize it or not, prayer is the encounter of God's thirst with ours. God thirsts that we may thirst for him. You would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.
Paradoxically our prayer of petition is a response to the plea of the living God: "They have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewn out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water!" Prayer is the response of faith to the free promise of salvation and also a response of love to the thirst of the only Son of God." (CCC #2559-2561)