This is an unusual title for an article. Yes, I am calling it a letter about prayer. I am sharing this with my readers, because it is an actual email I sent to a sister in Christ named Michelle. Michelle lives in Idaho, she is married and has a fine husband and two children.
Michelle had some financial problems at the moment, due to loss of work, and asked me to pray for her. She was feeling very low at this time and needed help. Of course, I really will pray for her and her family. I will not promise someone that I will pray for them then just forget it.
I think I touched on a few things, in my reply to her email, regarding pray. This is funny but true. I also hope we can all see our mistakes and correct them concerning some prayer issues. There were no pictures sent in my reply to Michelle but I am adding a few here for this article. SO HERE WE GO WITH MY RESPONSE.
I am sorry you lost another house that you were cleaning. I know this decreased your income again. I will ask God to give you a better house to work in, with a stable cleaning job. You are never a bother to me and I am honored that you will trust me enough to intercede to God on your behalf.
I also know that God never closes a door, unless he opens another window. I am praying that He will give you a lot better job. You email is NOT goofy, the Bible says, “Pray ye one for another.” I want to share something with you and maybe you have never had anyone say this to you before.
Here is something I noticed many years ago. People mean well (especially Christians) when they say things that sound spiritual. IT IS EASY FOR SOMEONE TO SAY, I AM PRAYING FOR YOU OR I WILL PRAY FOR YOU—BUT THEY NEVER DO. They go on with their own little life and forget about it 10 seconds after they said it. WHOOOOOSH. IT JUST WENT OVER THEIR HEAD.
Number 2. I will not ask just ANYONE to pray for me. If I do not believe they can really get hold of heaven, then why would I need their “DEAD” prayers, that never get out of their head.? That would not change anything. If I were depending on their prayers to help me, then I would be in a world of hurt. I need prayers that can reach God and His Throne.
Number 3. This one will either shock you into reality or make you laugh. This one really happened. Years ago Debbie’s son had to have another major brain surgery at Johns’ Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore Maryland. This is how I knew Dr. Ben Carson personally, he was Matthew’s neurosurgeon. Now with this 18 hour brain surgery, Matthew could die, be a vegetable, loose his speech or sight, or anything.
I go to the bank to get a few dollars out and the bank manager has been my friend for many years. SHE IS A CHRISTIAN. She goes to church and is very active. I told her about Matthew’s surgery and how serious it is. I ask her to please pray for Matthew and his family. GUESS WHAT SHE SAYS????? “WELL, I WILL KEEP MY FINGERS CROSSED THAT EVERYTHING GOES WELL.”
I am really thinking, ” WHAT THE HECK IS CROSSING YOUR FINGERS GOING TO DO?” You are a Christian and the “magic formula” is crossing your fingers. How long can you keep your fingers crossed? What happens if you Uncross your fingers or get a cramp in your hand? What happens if you forget to cross your fingers at the time of the surgery, or you forget? I think you see the ignorance in that.
Michelle, maybe a lucky rabbits foot or 4 leaf clover would have substituted for prayer. I know I am making light of what she said, but this was a very serious matter. I believe prayer is a serious matter.
Ben Carson ALWAYS prayed over every person he operated on. He also prayed with their family before any surgery. I know him and he is real. Not once did Ben Carson say, “Well I am going into surgery, you all keep your fingers crossed.”
SIS, EVEN CHRISTIANS SAY AND DO STUPID STUFF. Needless to say, We were not depending on her crossed fingers for a successful surgery. People mean well sometimes and say, I am praying for you. Here is one of my favorite sayings. “IT IS EASY TO BE GENEROUS WHEN IT COST YOU NOTHING.” Think about that.
Here is my favorite example of this. I have seen it over and over through the years. A husband or wife dies. Family, friends and acquaintances are all at the funeral home paying their “last respects” Well meaning people walk over and take the hand of spouse, pat it and say the “magic words.” “HONEY IF YOU NEED ANYTHING, JUST CALL ME OR LET ME KNOW.” Oh that sounds so kind and generous, doesn’t it? I can almost hear someone reading this laughing right now.
I really want to see the widow or widower test their generosity. Call them and ask to borrow their car for a few days. Or tell them you need a place to stay for a week, you do not want to be all alone yet. I wonder what their response would be? IT IS EASY TO BE GENEROUS WHEN IT COST YOU NOTHING!
Here is an example of the “COST ME NOTHING GENEROSITY.” “I know you are having a hard time, If I had the money it would be yours.” I would give you anything I have. (free advice, good intentions). It cost them nothing, even though they might mean well by saying it. Did they say, “Here, I have a little bit, I hope it will help?” NOPE.
Then there is the BIG ONE to try and make you feel better. “I AM PRAYING FOR YOU.” I am going to pray and ask God to meet your needs (I HOPE THEY REMEMBER TO PRAY, BUT MOST PEOPLE REALLY DO FORGET. FREE ADVICE AND GOOD INTENTIONS, RARELY CHANGE ANYTHING!
Prayers not prayed do not get answered. Yes the Bible says, Matthew 6:8 “Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.” No where in scripture does it say, “Because God already knows what you need do not ask Him.”
To the contrary Jesus said, Matthew 7:7-11 “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
4th. When a persons prayers change nothing in their own life, will their prayers change anything in your life? I guess that sounds harsh, but there is a large element of truth in it. I am not saying, quit asking people to pray for you. I am saying, to many play the “False Prayer Game.” Good intentions or false promises. I may be wrong on this, but I have seen it from Christians for years.
5th. The Bible does say, (KJV) James 5:16 “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” How often do we fail miserably in doing this. I do think God will hold us accountable for false promises we make.
The Bible also says, (KJV) I Thessalonians 5:17 “Pray without ceasing.” This means keep an attitude of prayer in your heart and mind all the time. I talk to the Lord and fellowship with Him all day long, not just 2 minutes when I climb into bed.
6th. When someone ask you to pray for them, stop what you are doing and pray with them right then. Lift up your heart and prayers to heaven immediately. Let the person see and know how important their request is to you. They will never forget it.
7. I am praying for you and your family Michelle and I will continue to do so. I am thankful and honored that you are my sister in Christ. I will write more later and wait to hear from you also.
LOVE IN CHRIST-RAY
I hope you enjoyed reading my response to Michelle’s email she sent. I hope it made you think about your own prayer life and the things we promise others. I hope you had a few laughs also. I am no expert on the subject of prayer. I have never met any expert concerning pray.
There is an old expression for those of the older generation. They were called “Prayer Warriors” because they kept the spirit of prayer in their hearts and minds, and talked to the Lord all the time. WE STILL NEED MORE PRAYER WARRIORS TODAY.
When God is real in your life, you know He is always present with you. You know He is near and hears you. The Holy Spirit lives in you. When you bow your head you are only a few inches from your heart. So, how close is He to you?
One final thing. I have heard many sermons by ministers. At the end most would say, “Bow your head” for the invitation. I am also a preacher and have preached for years. I never said bow your head. I always said, “BOW YOUR HEART.” This is the real position of pray that God see’s and hears.
Your thoughts, opinions and comments are welcome so leave them below. RAY