I have something that has been bothering me for years and it concerns prayer

Yes I do! I have something that has been bothering me for years and it concerns prayer. I’ve always felt that prayer was very personal and only done with all sincerity and not taken lightly.
I am somewhat offended when someone whom I have never met discovers that I have a sick loved one and offers to put his or her name on their prayer list and boast’s, 'we will put it on our website and you will have over five thousand people praying for her or him. That feels creepy to me, always has.
I remember when my mother was near death from cancer the hospital told us to go to a prayer room. a short while later a the house minister entered and asked us to join hands, and he began a generic prayer for her healing, a person he had never seen. I had a strong urge to withdraw my hands and walk out of there and I still feel that I should have. I wanted to wash my hands and apologize to God. I know the power of prayer first hand when it is sincere and from the heart. the other kind I think borderlines blasphemy. I once had a preacher stop by the house one day to see if I had another riding mower to donate
and reminding me that he could write me a receipt for twice what it was worth. 'yeah, that kind of preacher. When leaving he asked if there was anything he could pray for me about. without thinking about my words it just came out, 'No thank you, 'I already have and your prayer might mess mine up.
That was my heart talking out loud. If our words are hollow, I don’t think God hears them. Am I wrong? should I not feel that way?

Wow…I have to tell you, I think we are on the same page today! I also have had that thought come across my mind. Especially when it came time to pray for a person I have no connection with - it seemed like I was praying and not really feeling connected if that makes sense. Although, if I know something about that person or the situation that needs prayer I seem to connect more while praying.

I think I would have felt uncomfortable in the situation with the house minister. I agree, that prayer needs to be personal - a true, from the heart conversation with God.

I think you handled that situation pretty good! Especially when you knew the type of person he was.

I don’t think it’s wrong for you to feel that way. But I do think prayer requests need to be discerned on an individual basis. For example, when someone posts “Prayers needed, Father knows.”. That usually rubs me the wrong way, but not always. It depends if I know that person or not and sometimes I just get a gut feeling to pray for that person.

So as the day went on today, I continued to think about this. I DO pray for people that I don’t know. I prayed heavily and directly with a whole heart for all the senior citizens that were in the nursing homes during the lock downs (and I still do). I pray for all of God’s children to seek Him. So that leads me to believe that possibly the house minister WAS praying with a true heart. We don’t ever really know how a person will pray. I may have changed my view point on this a bit.

I do think that some just type in “prayers” on FB posts and may not ever really do it. But I also believe some do. Just a little more to think about I guess.

God bless and I hope you can feel a bit more comfortable about all of this - God may be able to clear this up for you thru prayer!

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I don’t see the harm in asking for prayers for a loved one. To me this shows faith. If someone is not of good standing that prays for another, why would God hold that against the one who is of good character?

How many prayed for the football player? We don’t know his faith or even if he is a believer but either way, this could bring him to the place he needs to be if he is not already there. The unity in the country that we saw was outstanding.

Instead of seeing some of the players taking a knee against the country, we saw all join in the prayers for a fellow sportsman. What an example to follow for those who don’t believe.

Imagine what would happen if the same unity would happen, in seeking God, for our nation, government, and elsewhere! Our problems would be over.


I get that. But I follow my senses. They have always served me well. When I have ignored them I always paid a price for it. How many times have all of us at one time or another have said, 'I knew this wasn’t gonna end well, or I knew I shouldn’t trust that person? concerning many forms of prayer I sense that it is inappropriate. ??? I can’t get around that. Thank God we are all different. :slight_smile:

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Mathew: 6 through 13

Not sure what you are saying here?

Mathew: 6 1-13 my bad

So, again, what are you saying this means?

exactly as it is written, is what it means to me. .

I think you must have skipped over the content. Of course it is appropriate and natural to pray for a ‘loved one’. that would be very sincere and done out of love and genuine concern. Football players praying in front of 6 million people on national television, Not so much.

I believe Matthew 6:1-13 is means not to pray vainly in the open, basically praying just to be seen by others. I don’t think it has anything to do with praying for people you don’t know. Also, we need to remember that we are to love all of our brothers and sisters. (Yes, discernment is also key.) You also see the the saints and apostles praying for all people.

So with that, I think prayer is between you and the Father, in Jesus’s name. Regardless of who you are praying for, known or unknown to you, if you pray with a true heart, Father listens. Hope this helps.

The whole point of the scripture given was not to be like the Pharisees. Prayer wasn’t the only example given. It is the attitude those things are done with.

Years ago, Oprah went to I believe Africa to help. Problem with it, to me, in God’s eyes was she had to have 60 minutes and all the news channels there to document, pat her on the back with spending some of her untold wealth to help the poor. This is what Christ was talking about. Go, do good, don’t make a scene, if people see, fine. Don’t bring the show first which is what the Pharisees always did.

By what you are saying, we should never have a national prayer day. (Though it needs to be sincere.) There are many Christian gatherings where it is done outside. Billy Graham did this many times and had prayer at the service and it was televised. What a better way to show people who we are and the faith we have letting God take control. People pray in restaurants before they eat.

When Christ broke the bread and gave thanks in front of the multitude, I am sure there were hungry heathens in the crowd.

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I pray for everyone in the world every morning on my beach walk with my dog. First, I always give thanks for everything in my little world I live in. My wife, my dog, the day, the air, my health, ect… Then I ask God to take care of every one in the world. I used to pray for this certain person or that certain person. One day it occurred to me that everyone in the world needs God in one way or the other, so I just started praying for everyone. I know there are many people that do not even believe in God, but I do and I am the one asking. It sure does make the 'I’ll add you to my prayer list", or “I’ll say a prayer for you” become alot easier… Just my 2 cents…

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I respect your beliefs and opinions even though they differ vastly with mine. like I said , 'thank the lord we are all not alike.