According to St. Francis de Sales in his Sermons on Prayer, petitions offered in prayer are between meditation and contemplation prayer. He contends that petitions are made to God in prayer when “we become confident enough to ask for and entreat Him to give us what we desire.”
St. Francis warns that petitions made by justice are not prayer. For what is being asked of God is being asked for in justice for that which we feel is due. He further warns us that petitions made by authority are not prayer. For what is being asked is being asked in the form of a command.
However, the Saint contends that petitions made by grace are true prayer. For what is being asked of God, who is far superior to us, by grace is that which is not due us.