That’s something we all wonder about. Take the case of the young elementary school student who wins several of the school’s oratorical contests. As he speaks to his grammar school audience, his mind forms the unarticulated prayer that someday he’ll be able to speak like this to adults.
Years later, he becomes a lector in his parish church and speaks to whole congregations about prayer and Scripture. His prayer was answered, perhaps not in an astonishing way, but in a way that fits into his life style.
So, if in the future, I say I’ll keep you in my prayers, know that there will be an effect, and it’s not just a sentence I say to put you at peace or ease. If the prayer is for a relative or friend, they, too, will have a result. They may not notice it, but who can notice a thought. You have to wait for its effect.