Race & Politics, Theory & Essay

My Problem With Prayer

Really? You prayed for me so I can come back to this?

Aside from Tony Soprano, some serial killers and most Deltas, everyone loves their mom. In fact, you can hate any and every thing from kittens to your own kids, but nothing would garner the type of response a person would get when admitting they hate their own mother.

Anyway, everyone loves their mom. But, not everyone has a mom who everyone loves, and I happen to be one of the people who do. I was aware of this even before she first fell ill—I’ve (half)jokingly mentioned many times that my friends like my parents more than they like me—and the avalanche of love and support she’s received has reminded me.

Much of this love and support has come in the form of prayer. People praying for her, praying with her, and even suggesting special prayers for situations like this. In fact, tonight I searched for “mom” in Gmail and looked at emails and Gchats I received around the time people first found out she was ill. Every single person who contacted me mentioned something about prayer.

While this has definitely—definitely—been appreciated by my mother and the rest of my family, this situation has reinforced the disconnect I’ve always had with prayer in general and prayer specifically for ill people in particular.

Now, I’m (obviously) not a theological scholar. But, I do know that Christianity, Islam, and Judaism all offer their true believers some form of an afterlife. And, in each case, the afterlife is a much, much, much better version of Earth.

If Christians, Jews, and Muslims believe this to be true, why pray for a sick person’s health to get better? I understand praying for their souls and salvation if they do happen to pass away, but if whatever comes after Earth is an unfathomably awesome version of all the best things we experience here, why would you want someone to get better so that they have to stay on shitty ole Earth a second longer than they have to?

Interestingly enough, this disconnect hasn’t altered my prayers in any way. I’m a Christian, and I believe in Heaven. I also want my mom to get better, and I’ll continue to do what I can to make sure that happens. This includes prayer, which may or may not help—the murky waters of God’s will is another theoretical pickle, but that’s another topic for another day—but what’s the harm in doing it anyway?

But, if I truly believe what I say I believe, wanting my mom to get better is a selfish want. An honorable and socially acceptable want, but selfish nonetheless. Perhaps this is where the disconnect occurs. Maybe I’m missing something, but if Heaven exists and if I believe Heaven exists, all this prayer for my mom is just me, in a roundabout way, praying for me.

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

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Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a contributing editor for EBONY.com. He resides in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes.

  • http://www.twitter.com/mcnairian5 Fiveisthenumber

    Well, the Earth isn’t shitty per se, but we have done a good job of fuggin it up. We have created bad situations too.

    We pray for the health and strength of others, as it is in our nature to want people to live long, prosperous lives. The reality is that we should pray that god’s will be done. We should pray that god’s grace and mercy cover those who are connected to the one that is sick and infirm.

    *passes the offering plate*

    • Yoles

      *puts a check for 10% in the plate*

      i totally agree and so well said… just lovely

      • http://www.twitter.com/mcnairian5 Fiveisthenumber

        Thank ya!

    • http://twitter.com/kjnetic Sith King Jordan aka Bruce Lil’ Wayne bka 2 Fitted Hatz

      “The reality is that we should pray that god’s will be done. We should pray that god’s grace and mercy cover those who are connected to the one that is sick and infirm.”

      yay-men.

      *puts in a check for 10%*

      (on a side note, this made me think of the preacher’s wife, when courtney vance was talking to the kid on prayer…it’s like saying a small wish as you shoot the ball, hoping it to go in…even tho you may have had hours and hours of practice. it is what it is, tho)

      • http://www.twitter.com/mcnairian5 Fiveisthenumber

        *nods*

    • Sweet GA Brown

      +1

    • Breezy

      +1

    • http://verysmartbrothas.com The Champ

      “The reality is that we should pray that god’s will be done. We should pray that god’s grace and mercy cover those who are connected to the one that is sick and infirm.”

      good point

    • The Guy Formerly Know As Hmmmm

      Funny.
      You were the first person to respond and your comment is the answer to it all. Works in mysterious ways, the old folks used to tell me.

    • Asiyah

      I like what you said, Five…

      :)

    • http://www.aworknprogress.com Diana

      That will be done part is interesting. Last week in Bible Study a woman said she was praying for a friend who was facing the possibility of getting her legs amputated and the woman could not, would not, totally refused to say ‘thy will be done’ in her prayers. Because she was not prepared for God’s potential response. People in the class then asked her why she would assume that God’s will would be the worst case scenario. It was good that she was honest about her refusal though – because a lot of people say thy will be done – and don’t really mean it. In terms of a true surrender of the issue/problem to God. Try to snatch it from God or put their foot in it.

    • newGuy

      huh?

    • Carolyn Hogg

      I agree! We are being selfish to want someone to stay here, making their transition unbearable. As said above, we should pray God’s Will to be done in that person’s life. I just experienced that with a beautiful man, my best friend on earth, my first true mortal love, my fiancé. I had to let him know that I love him, and it is okay to close his eyes; however he kept opening his eyes! He put up a fight to not leave me until his heart gave out; and God transitioned him Home. No more pain in a Glorious Body! God wants us to have long life and have it more abundantly than on earth; but, who would not want to go to an Eternal place, living in a mansion with streets paved of gold! I am continually striving everyday, every moment of the day to get there!

  • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

    Exactly. It’s selfish, but most of us don’t think selfishness is always a bad thing (at least I don’t). To me it comes down to whether or not the person is suffering and what their quality of life is. If they’re tired and at peace with going to the other side then I won’t even be worried about it at all. I’m just sad that I’ll never get to see or converse with them anymore. And that is selfish, but it is what it is as far as I’m concerned. Good post though Champ

    • http://verysmartbrothas.com The Champ

      “To me it comes down to whether or not the person is suffering and what their quality of life is”

      it’s funny how much gray there is in regards to all of this

    • Carolyn Hogg

      T.Q. Fuego, it depends on if they have their life in order to determine where they are going. At that instant, they could call out The Name of Jesus Christ and be saved!!

  • Rockelle

    And the church says Amen.

  • http://twitter.com/HumanSpiderACNJ The Human Spider

    There’s a saying that goes you never truly realize what you have until you’ve lost it. The same thing rings true if you’re close to losing it.

    I think everyone wants for a significant family member/lover/friend to recover from whatever they’re ailing from so that they can spend a little more time with them. Human nature to care for others and whatnot. But the sad truth is, all things come to a beginning and an end. Doesn’t make it hurt any less.

    You just pray that the end is amicable and doesn’t leave too many scars…

    • http://verysmartbrothas.com The Champ

      You just pray that the end is amicable and doesn’t leave too many scars…

      this is why my number one goal in life is to just be old and happy

      • Carolyn Hogg

        You cannot be happy without joy and without personally knowing Our LORD and Saviour!

  • http://testorshia.blogspot.com Tes

    I’ve always had issue with prayer too, Uncle Champ. I always felt like I was asking Santa for things instead of actually being mindful of what I was asking this all powerful being to do for my life. So I stopped praying and just started talking to God. Telling Him what I wanted, what I thought, what I felt and…nothing’s happened, at least to my young eyes, and that’s okay. For me, God’s there to listen and be a friend *shrugs* anything else I have to make happen here and try to be a good person while doing so.

    I’m not sure if praying for your mom’s health is selfish because it’s obvious she brings joy to so many people outside of just you and your family, so I wouldn’t feel too bad about that Uncle Champ.

    I do want to say that I wish her all the health, and luck, and love a person could have. And I want to tell you that I think it’s really dope that you’re opening up to us like this.

    And that’s all I got.

    • SoSincere

      Hey Tes! When you said that you tell God what you wanted, thought and felt and it seemed like nothing happened, made me smile because as I said in my comment further down that I was taught to pray when I was little but I wasn’t always sure if it did anything but then as I’ve gotten a little older I’ve realized that it does in fact do a whole lot, I was just going about it the wrong way.

      This older lady told me that when we pray we talk to God and he listens and when we read the Bible, he talks back to us and then she asked me do I listen when he talks? That made me think because I realized I was doing a whole lot of talking but was not doing very much listening. Ever since I’ve been trying to read my Bible a little more and I must say it has really helped me to think of God as a close friend and it has helped me to pray better and realize when my prayers are actually being answered. Hope this helps!

      • http://testorshia.blogspot.com Tes

        Hey Sincere!

        I’m not a big Bible reader, but now that you mention it, that does make a lot of sense :)

      • Carolyn Hogg

        Yes, SoSincere, God talks to you through His Word; however, you want an intimate relationship with Him! He will talk to you just like a friend like you are doing now!

        • Carolyn Hogg

          There is a straight vertical line open up for communication to God, and a straight horizontal line to others, making a Cross. It is infinite lines to show His Love for us, along with our love for everyone!

        • Carolyn Hogg

          There is a straight vertical line open up for communication to God, and a straight horizontal line to others, making a Cross. It is infinite lines to show His Love for us, along with our love for everyone!

      • Carolyn Hogg

        I am glad of that SoSincere, and Kudos to the Christian lady.

      • Carolyn Hogg

        I am glad of that SoSincere, and Kudos to the Christian lady.

  • mochazina

    yeah, the afterlife is our goal, but often the destruction brought on humanity by or collective sin causes disease and premature death. so we pray. it can be for our own desires of not losing a loved one, but it can also be to allow that loved one their proper amount of time to fulfill their purpose.

  • Toria

    This is exactly why my friend always makes it a point to say that he will pray for God’s will to be done. It used to irritate me because the person asking for prayer usually is looking for some type of comfort from it and I didn’t understand it. Your reasoning about the afterlife being better than this one is exactly what he told me– God’s will be done.

    There have only been two times when I have not prayed for an ill person’s recovery but for God to take them home. Lung cancer and medication errors was a horrible combination in both cases. And in both of these cases, they wanted to go.

    Even if praying for your mom is an indirect way of praying for your ‘selfish’ wants, it still can’t hurt to ask. It’s a valid desire. Maybe what you’re really asking for is a more time with your mother to enjoy her presence, as you’ve now been presented with how important she is to you and how quickly life can change. Maybe you’re asking for more time to prepare yourself for what happens, whether it occurs now or 30 years from now.

    I pray for the same things even if they are socially acceptable selfishness. I think everyone does to an extent.

    • Carolyn Hogg

      So true!! You never know God’s Plan until His Will be done!

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

    I don’t pray. I believe it’s what people do when they don’t know what else to do and it makes them feel like better. Not knocking that cause you do what you have to to get through.

    But there are things I never understood about prayer: If it’s all God’s will in the end, He’s gonna do what He wants whether you pray or not right? Another. If more than one person prays for the same thing, like to survive something horrible but only one can, who’s prayer gets answered? Why?

    It’s questions like these that I have never gotten a satisfactory answers to. Maybe I’ve asked the wrong people. Or, more likely, maybe there aren’t any.

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

      Oh. And not everyone loves their mom. For reasons. Good ones.

      • That Ugly Kid

        Gives you an e-hug. It’s okay. I’m here for you. I also saw you last week while I was on my way at the movies. You looked great.

        • That Ugly Kid

          to* the movies

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

          Uh…Thanks. #ThingsStalkersSay

          • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

            Lol.

          • That Ugly Kid

            How am I a stalker? I only cross referenced your comments on VSB with your IP address, then pinpointed your Twitter updates and was able to decipher the origin of the device used to make them. A few calls here and there and presto!

            • Rockelle

              The CIA is looking for people like you.

              • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

                I think the FBI is looking for him too.

              • That Ugly Kid

                What would you say if the CIA is the one who authorized the search?

                • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

                  That’ll really help with your insanity defense. :-)

                  • That Ugly Kid

                    I hate you. I really do. I hope you wake up one day and find out that your eyebrows have been shaven off. That’s how much I loathe you!

                    • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

                      Ha! I would take a hit out on the person who would dare!

                • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

                  That you know too much and must be eliminated immediately.

      • Carolyn Hogg

        No reason is good because The Good Book, The Bible, says honor your Father and Mother so your days be long. Forgiveness is the best medicine for the soul and heart; this can cause premature death!

      • Carolyn Hogg

        No reason is good because The Good Book, The Bible, says honor your Father and Mother so your days be long. Forgiveness is the best medicine for the soul and heart; this can cause premature death!

    • jennifer

      I don’t think there are any real concrete answers, there can’t be. Every time something happens that you don’t like or don’t understand they tell you “God works in Mysterious Ways”.

      Being a non-christian looking in, It seems like prayer amounts to little more than meditation. Which is fine, but why put yourself in a position to feel like your God wants you to suffer? That’s what I don’t get. “Ask and it shall be given” … Oh but if you didn’t get what you asked for it’s because you didn’t have enough faith? Or the Mysterious Ways argument? I stay confused about that.

      • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

        sigh…so sad. so true.

      • JohnQuest

        I am very sorry to read about your Mother, and hope for the best possible outcome for her and your family.

        Jennifer, as far as I know I’m the only none believer I know. Prayer, belief in a Deity and Religion is not foreign to me just incomprehensible.

        • Carolyn Hogg

          Expand your comprehension; God’s Knowledge is too much for us to contain it all. “My thoughts are not your thoughts; my ways are not your ways.”

        • Carolyn Hogg

          Expand your comprehension; God’s Knowledge is too much for us to contain it all. “My thoughts are not your thoughts; my ways are not your ways.”

      • Carolyn Hogg

        Prayer is more than meditation! It is a Hope to Believe the inevitable! It soothes the mind, body, and soul; it is a guarantee! No, God does not want you to suffer. Jeremiah 29:11 says, He knows the thoughts that he thinks toward you, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. III John 2, Beloved, I wish above all things that thou prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. If you did not get what you want, God had something better for you in the long run not just for that moment. Even when my loved ones transitioned Home, they saw what God has for them because they were saved! I wanted to be selfish and want them to stay; however, they saw their Eternal reward. I did not get what I wanted at first, but they did-to transform in their Glorious bodies-no more pain, no more sorrow. I could not pray over what their will was. God knows Best! That is why we have to Trust Him at His Word!

      • Carolyn Hogg

        Prayer is more than meditation! It is a Hope to Believe the inevitable! It soothes the mind, body, and soul; it is a guarantee! No, God does not want you to suffer. Jeremiah 29:11 says, He knows the thoughts that he thinks toward you, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. III John 2, Beloved, I wish above all things that thou prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. If you did not get what you want, God had something better for you in the long run not just for that moment. Even when my loved ones transitioned Home, they saw what God has for them because they were saved! I wanted to be selfish and want them to stay; however, they saw their Eternal reward. I did not get what I wanted at first, but they did-to transform in their Glorious bodies-no more pain, no more sorrow. I could not pray over what their will was. God knows Best! That is why we have to Trust Him at His Word!

    • Sweet GA Brown

      Prayer does, hopefully, make the person praying feel better and gain strength but if your praying for someone else it should also give them strength too.

      It will always be Gods will but you cant ask other people what they think about this or that. You have to study the word and pray for understanding.

      One thing about prayer is that the harder you pray and the more vulnerable you are to the Lord, your more likely to get your prayers answered. God know’s when ppl just praying to pray.

      • Tx10inch

        Good words sweetness…

        I’ll add that as a Christian you believe that good or bad, everything happens for a reason due to God’s will. He allows things, as horrible as they might seem to not only mold us into stronger individuals but to test our faith and completely depend on Him.

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

          Why does He need to test our faith? Why does he need us to completely depend on Him? These strike me as rather base needs for such a being as God is said to be.

          Should the Creator of Everything need constant reassurance through the suffering of His children? Seems a small, petty, @ssholish thing to do those He claims to love.

          • Juiciest Mango

            I am a Christian,believe in God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, thus far, BUT can I tell you, I’ve asked these very same questions, and not even this man of God who looks like John the Baptist-as per his description in the Holy Book, have yet to give me a concrete answer. It is frustrating, and I’ve just in the past couple of months left the subject matter alone as it just makes me angry.

            By the way, hello, and great questions lady!

            • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

              Hello to you to and thanks!

            • Carolyn Hogg

              It is time for you to ask The Lord to show you were to go. You may have grown to another level that the church has not reached yet.

            • Carolyn Hogg

              It is time for you to ask The Lord to show you were to go. You may have grown to another level that the church has not reached yet.

        • Carolyn Hogg

          Yes, He does not cause but allows! Like He allowed the devil to afflict Job to see if he would curse God but he could not kill him.

        • Carolyn Hogg

          Yes, He does not cause but allows! Like He allowed the devil to afflict Job to see if he would curse God but he could not kill him.

      • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

        “One thing about prayer is that the harder you pray and the more vulnerable you are to the Lord, your more likely to get your prayers answered.”

        You really shouldn’t tell people this.

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

          +1 @ Witty P, but to each their own

      • Carolyn Hogg

        I agree! You have to know that you know for yourself. There was a scripture in Timothy about women keep silent that was not what was meant. The first person That ministered was Mary Magdelene, spreading The Good News of
        Jesus Christ’s Resurrection!

      • Carolyn Hogg

        You do not have to pray long and hard, just sincere and consistent. The Pharisees and Sadduces had the most elaborate way with words but it was not in their hearts.

    • Kema

      “Another. If more than one person prays for the same thing, like to survive something horrible but only one can, who’s prayer gets answered? Why?”

      This is something I have pondered as well. What if someone is praying for someone to heal while that person is praying to go. *Shrugs* Well I guess it ultimately comes down to God’s will.

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

        Again it supposedly comes down to God’s will. And His will should supersede everything. So, again, why pray? Why pretend He cares what you personally want or that you can change the inevitable?

        Is it to feel like someone is listening? Everyone wants to feel heard. Even me. One of the reasons I come here to comment.

        But, ultimately, you are still talking to yourself to feel better or to get to the place you know you need to be. Imo, it’s still your voice, your thoughts. Cause deep down, many of us know what we need to do to get what we want. Sometimes we just need a pep talk to accept what we need though.

        Have faith in yourself instead of some all-powerful deity that seems mostly indifferent to you. Or not. Again, whatever gets you through.

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

          “Why pretend He cares what you personally want or that you can change the inevitable?”

          See, this is where I thought Champ was goin when I first read the title. He didn’t, but I’m glad you did. I agree with the selfish diagnosis by Champ though. Most things that Western religious doctrine suggest strike me as self-absorbed at best and delusional at worst. I LOVE Eastern religions like Taoism that are all about acceptance of what is, (self-)discipline and freeing yourself from ego. THAT’s some spirituality that I’m seeking. As far as the afterlife, I’m completely fine with not knowing. It’s gonna happen one way or another, so I might as well let it happen and find out when I get there. I don’t believe in hell tho…so there’s that. TAC you’re holdin it ALL THE WAY down today though. I wasn’t gonna comment today, but I couldn’t leave u hanging after you made such excellent points.

          • Asiyah

            I think all religions, if I am not mistaken, advocate freeing oneself from ego and not succumbing to arrogance. Just because you may not see that in people who practice Western religions doesn’t mean that it doesn’t ask us to do that.

            Furthermore, if by Western religions you mean the Abrahamic faiths of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, that is misleading. They started in the Eastern part of the world, just like Taoism, Buddhism, and Hinduism.

          • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

            Thanks for your response. Glad you feel like I made any point at all. I wasn’t sure and I was trying not offend in the process.

            Regarding the afterlife, I do believe there is more beyond this mortal one. Energy can neither be created or destroyed and life is essentially energy. Or the soul, if you prefer. I believe this energy has to go somewhere, where I can’t know till I get there myself.

            It’s been said that hell is others. But I guess heaven can be others too. It all depends.

            • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

              Right. In total agreement with you TAC.

        • Carolyn Hogg

          Faith in yourself will make you lose every time, ESP., during the storm.

        • Carolyn Hogg

          God bless you, and I pray for understanding, knowledge, wisdom, discernment, and revelation. I pray this for myself, you, and others.

      • Carolyn Hogg

        You should not pray over anyone’s will. This is why we should pray for God’s Will to be done on that person’s behalf!

    • http://www.styleillusions.com WIP

      Prayer, for me, isn’t simply about asking for stuff. I, mostly, say thank you. Sometimes I ask for direction. Sometimes I pray for others. A prayer for God’s will is simply humbling oneself, IMO, and acknowledging that it’s not your will but HIS will.

      • Asiyah

        Exactly! Sometimes I just stand on my rug in appreciation for my life.

        • Carolyn Hogg

          I do not see how a person cannot believe; I am in Awe of God everyday! How can you not see His Creation and not believe? Look at how fearfully and wonderfully made You are (Psalm 139:14)!

      • Carolyn Hogg

        Let the church say Amen!

    • SoSincere

      TAC, I really appreciate your honesty, I think there’s a lot of people out there that have wondered the same things but may not have ever voiced it.
      Personally I’ve found satisfactory answers to those questions right in the Bible, it took me some time though….lol.
      Here’s what I found…. … Every bad thing that happens is not God’s Will. In the Bible at James 1:13 it says that “when under trial let no one say, ‘I’m being tried by God’. For with evil things God cannot be tried nor does he himself try anyone.” So, God is not the source of all the bad things that we see going on around us. Not sure if you read the Bible but if you do or even if you don’t at least look up Job 34:10-12 because Job went through a whole lot of bad stuff but he still said that he knew for a fact that God himself does not act wickedly.
      So, basically when bad things happen it does not mean that it was God’s will. However, there are things that truly are God’s will and that’s where studying the Bible comes in because that’s where we really find out what God’s will really is. That way we don’t have to rely on the proverbial “they” to tell us what’s God’s will and what’s not. (I’ve personally found that liberating ;-) )
      In regards to prayer, God does listen to our prayers. And there have been times in the Bible, (I mentioned one in my comment further down) where God has decided to do one thing but because of prayer has decided to do something else. In fact there are even times in the Bible where it says that God felt regret in his heart over a decision he made, (even though he had every right to make it) because the people involved prayed earnestly or had a change of heart.

      In regards to two people praying for the same thing, and only one gets it, well I would imagine a lot would depend on the situation and what was being prayed for. Ecclesiates 9:11 says that unforeseen occurrences befall us all. So with that being said sometimes things out of our control just happen but we can pray for the strength and help to deal successfully with these trying circumstances.

      Not sure if that helps you out at all but I’ve found knowing those things comforting. Check out this link, I found it may explain things a little better:
      http://www.jw.org/en/publications/magazines/g201107/why-so-much-suffering/

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

        Thank you for trying to answer my questions. I appreciate it. Oftentimes true believers seem offended when doubt is cast upon their God and/or religion.

        As for the Bible, I gave up on reading and trying to understand it years ago. What I read seemed so contradictory to me at times, I wasn’t sure what I was to use as a guide and what to dismiss outright so I sorta dismissed everything. So I can’t promise I will turn to it for further answers but again I appreciate you at least suggesting where I could start.

        I will check out the link though. I’m a sucker for a good read. :)

        • Carolyn Hogg

          The Word says do not forsake your assembly. Get into a BIBLE-Based church with other believers. Study to show yourself approved!

      • Carolyn Hogg

        Thank you for James 1:13.

    • Carolyn Hogg

      Prayers are an outlet to talk to God but most of us do not listen due to being too busy asking for THINGS. God’s Character is not Respect of Person; however, He wants all to be saved and enjoy Eternal Life. He is a Gentleman, meaning He does not make you do anything you do not want to do. You have free will, a choice to be saved or not. Those who did not make it may not have repented for their sins. At a twinkle of an eye, a person can repent; it does not take a long, drawn out prayer! Maybe, you should pray if you do not know the answer for yourself. It is Healthy to know that there is A Higher Deity/Power than us! Invest in your life! Get to know God for yourself. Ask a Christian you may know to guide you. You can fb me, and I will be glad to assist you. The best thing you can do is to become a Believer. Confess with your mouth and believe in your heart that Jesus died for our sins and God raised Him up the third day; you shall be (not will be) saved. Just calling out Jesus and believing it can mean all the difference whether you spend Eternity in Heaven or Hell! It is real. Do not wait too late!

  • jennifer

    Besides the prayers at church pre-school before snack time, I’ve never prayed. But I guess if you do pray, the highest form of prayer for a sick person would be for their comfort and/or peace of mind… Whatever that means for them, even if that doesn’t match up with what you want for them.

    • Carolyn Hogg

      Heaven and Hell is real, my Sisters and Brothers! Do not wait until it is too late. You will always be tormented in Hell

  • That Ugly Kid

    As an Atheist, I usually don’t mind prayer. I just think it does absolutely nothing.

    The only time prayer bugs me, is in a medical setting. My goal in life is to be a doctor. A neurologist/surgeon. And the biggest thing that annoys the f*ck out of me is when, after a successful surgery/treatment, the patient’s family/friend walks past the doctor, and say to the patient, “Thank God, you’re okay! I prayed so much for you to get through this!”

    Excuse me…

    Thank God? So, me, the surgeon who actually did the surgery had nothing to do with this, right? It was you, on your knees, eyes closed, and hands clasped together, doing nothing but talking. That’s what made the donor’s liver leap into your husband’s body? All the medical schooling, which also put me in an azzload of debt, was a non-factor, right?

    You’d be surpise as to how many people ignore the HUMAN aspects of “miracles”. You want to pray, fine. Just don’t ignore the human element. Acknowledge doctors and everyone else that deserve it. Say “Thank You”.

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

      They will say that God worked through you or gave you the ability to learn how to perform the life saving surgery.

      But if your patient dies, you, not God, will get the blame. Lovely how that works, isn’t it?

      • Sweet GA Brown

        Nope it will be God’s will. But you do have a point, if the doctor were to say that out there mouth, the whole family will forget about God’s will all together and go for his throat.

      • SweetSass

        YUP. *nods head repeatedly*

    • chameleonic

      you literally might be the only person id let look at me tuk. im gonna fly you to my house and you shall perform that jigsaw brain surgery. please and thank you my love!

      • That Ugly Kid

        No prob. When I become a doctor I’ll make sure to give you a thorough check-up.

        • Iceprincess2

          Give her a lobotomy lmfao

          • SweetSass

            BOL! Even I didn’t go there!

    • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

      I think you’d love this Wikipedia article:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Studies_on_intercessory_prayer

    • DreadedSouth

      This times a million. I wish that for a 30 day period those that claim to believe in a god had to rely on him/her/it for everything. No man-made conveniences like A/C or combustion engines, just everything natural as the good lord intended…

      • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

        *searches for helmet* *dons flak jacket* Things are going to get real in here!

        • DreadedSouth

          lol I’m saying tho… Stand by your convictions.

      • Kema

        Those that believe in God do rely on God for everything if they believe all things are made possible by God. :-)

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

          that is such a cop-out… sorry, I need to go sit in the corner today.

          • Kema

            “Whether you can observe a thing or not depends on the theory which you use. It is the theory which decides what can be observed. ” Einstein

            • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

              but not what is

            • SweetSass

              Theories are meant to be tested and confirmed or found to be lacking. Since you cannot test ‘faith’ or the followers resists the conclusive results that faith in God is silly… it’s no theorem.

              Join Bill “Christianity is a Philosophy” O’Reilly in the time out corner. lol.

              • Kema

                lol! I understand it isnt a theory. I was making the point that if you are a believer you tend to see things one way while if you are not you see it another. Where you land has a lot to do with where you start.

          • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

            Yeah I’m not even an atheist and I think TAC and TUK are clearly winning this one as far as infallible points and perspectives. These cliche (and imo not that well formulated) answers from the believers just aren’t doing much but confirming what I’ve been thinking for some time now…Maybe somebody will come through and hold it down for the Christians though…

            • http://twitter.com/kjnetic sith king jordan

              “Yeah I’m not even an atheist and I think TAC and TUK are clearly winning this one as far as infallible points and perspectives.”

              what is there to be won?

              • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

                Clarity, coherency, and consistency without contradiction or circular logic is what’s to be won imo. If you read my other posts though, you’ll see that I’m not an atheist either, just not sold on the typical reasoning and thought process of most Christians that I converse with.

                • http://twitter.com/kjnetic Sith King Jordan aka Bruce Lil’ Wayne bka 2 Fitted Hatz

                  you say…”circular logic”…

                  but…

                  hm. how do i word this….

                  i understand that the crux of discussions, especially web-based ones like this, is that we alll have our different life experiences, which contribute to our own unique opinions on a subject..and we share and discuss with others…

                  when you say “win”, in terms of having the clearest, most logical thought process…

                  i kinda ask myself…”how can you have a logical discussion about a non-logical concept like, ‘faith’?”

                  I guess what i’m trying to say, is that i don’t think it’s fair, or logical, to try to have a “who has the best” contest/debate on a non-logical topic.

                  i could be wrong, but…that’s just my opinion.

      • Boo Radley

        Your premise is faulty in that it assumes that “man-made” and the divinely influenced are mutually exclusive. Science and God are not contradictory. I think of them like two books written by the same brilliant author–or two chapters of the same book, even.

        Have you ever truly examined the H2O molecule? It’s magnificent! [I’ll resist the urge to go supergeek. ] To examine the structure of something as basic yet highly complex as the water molecule and to denounce it as coincidence is the sheerest form of arrogance and ignorance.

        To counter your original point, I wish that everyone who claims NOT to believe in God would try to live 30 days without HIM or any of the things he created. Stay thirsty, my friends.

        • Asiyah

          “Science and God are not contradictory.”

          THANK YOU! Agreed!!!!

        • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

          I think the contradiction is little more than a veneer covering simple politics. When you look at who is pushing one side or another, these weren’t people who were going to agree on much anyway. Simply put, it’s politics under another name.

        • That Ugly Kid

          “To examine the structure of something as basic yet highly complex as the water molecule and to denounce it as coincidence is the sheerest form of arrogance and ignorance.”

          False. To think that you, a fragile, imperfect human, is SOOO important that a perfect being that can literally create universes actually cares about what’s going in your mortal life, despite all the complexity and beauty that is the universe, is the grandest form of arrogance. To automatically attribute something you can’t explain to a God, without even a shred of evidence to back the claim, and to tell others you don’t NEED evidence, is the grandest form of ignorance.

          “I wish that everyone who claims NOT to believe in God would try to live 30 days without HIM or any of the things he created.”

          I’ve lived 14 years without God (been an Atheist since I was 8). Now what do I win?

          • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

            TUK, not to divert the topic too much, but I have a question for you and the other atheists/agnostics/non-believers on the board. I remember reading that people who trend our general direction tend to have weaker social ties than average. (The implication is that Belief in God is an emergent property of social interrelatedness, which higher relatedness leads to a great likelihood of belief.)

            Do you think compared to others that you have stronger social ties? I know keeping it 100 that I’m not one to easily feel deeply interrelated to people. I’m wondering if others feel likewise.

            • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

              I’ve been a Christian for 14 yrs… a non-believer for about… 5 months. But I’ve never been a people person. But I do notice that my new status as “non-believer” has quietly excluded me from a lot of circles I once belonged to. Not in a judging way, but there’s clearly a divide now once they find out about my “change”… but both parties contribute to the divide, i must admit.

            • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

              My sister says I’m anti-social. I say that I’m not wired for human interaction.

              Either way, I find most people pleasant enough but I prefer to be alone. I’ve never really thought how that may or may not relate to my atheism.

              I like to think and do on my own terms and something about being a “follower” doesn’t sit well with me. And religion in my family was about blind following; no questions, no doubts.

              Thinking about it, rejecting religion may have started out as a rebellion but it became more as I looked into my non-belief and tried to answer why it just clicked for others but not me.

          • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

            like…. at least 5 VSB girls

          • Boo Radley

            “False. To think that you, a fragile, imperfect human, is SOOO important that a perfect being that can literally create universes actually cares about what’s going in your mortal life, despite all the complexity and beauty that is the universe, is the grandest form of arrogance.”

            I find this contadictory, in that I consider myself, fragile human that I am, to be part of all the complexity and beauty that is the universe. Thus, I remain grateful and in constant awe of this perfect being that created it.

            “To automatically attribute something you can’t explain to a God, without even a shred of evidence to back the claim and to tell others you don’t NEED evidence…”

            Crediting my existence and that of the universe to a higher power was not automatic, nor did it come without evidence. I was raised in various traditional religious settings that taught me to view prayer as a magic wand and Christianity as a battering ram. As I got older, I began to feel the same disillusionment that many feel, however, I also had several experiences which could leave no doubt as to the existence of a spiritual realm. My adult decision to remain in Christianity came after years of struggling to find common ground between what I knew to be true and what I was taught to believe.

            My heart aches for people like you, because behind your vehement denial of God I hear notes of frustration and betrayal because He was not who you were told he was. The traditional church has become such a bastion of hatred and exclusivism that the very term “evangelical Christian” has become a synonym for bigot; and the average person claiming to be Christian bares so little resemblance to Christ that the religion has a whole is becoming a running joke. So like you, I trashed it all. Then I started from the beginning. Christ, as man, existed.

            This is documented fact. As a man, he lived a life that I find admirable and wish to emulate, so I try. That is my religion, in a nutshell.

            • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

              ” I also had several experiences which could leave no doubt as to the existence of a spiritual realm.”

              Me too, but there can be a spiritual realm without the necessity of religious doctrine. That’s why I don’t get the need to pin down exactly what that realm entails, or to insist that it requires so much from us while we’re in this realm. I’ve just seen really intelligent people add more meanings or incorrect meanings to situations, circumstances, and events way too often to be sold that that’s not what’s happening here. Why would be punished for not knowing? This ish is way too complicated and iffy for the stakes to be that high. That’s one of my biggest issues.

              “This is documented fact. As a man, he lived a life that I find admirable and wish to emulate, so I try. That is my religion, in a nutshell.”

              I agree, but was his name actually Christ though? Also, I wish to emulate him as well, but don’t think I need to be or identify myself as a “Christian” to do so….

              • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

                Release me from moderation! I had quite the noteworthy response if I do say so myself lol

            • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

              My heart aches for people like you, because behind your vehement denial of God I hear notes of frustration and betrayal because He was not who you were told he was. The traditional church has become such a bastion of hatred and exclusivism that the very term “evangelical Christian” has become a synonym for bigot; and the average person claiming to be Christian bares so little resemblance to Christ that the religion has a whole is becoming a running joke. So like you, I trashed it all. Then I started from the beginning. Christ, as man, existed.

              Ain’t that the truth. I know a lot of non-believer have this floating around in their head, so I know it’s true. As for me, it’s not the intolerance thing. It’s just that religious faith isn’t something I have a capacity for. I’m not against religion, but to me, it’s like offering Lance Bass some nani: interesting, but ultimately a waste of everyone’s time. No hate as much as non-interest on my part. Think of it as an amicable divorce from the Church where it’s not them, it’s me. :)

              • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

                +1 Well said Todd

              • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5FR1LGsT7E TheAnti-Cool

                What he said.

          • Namia

            I think ‘Boo Radley’ meant God’s creations ..like say water!!!!!!!!! you all can live with out that????…not if you have been worshiping HIM

          • JW

            Thank you for that comment.

        • Breezy

          Boo Radley: I wish you would go supergeek :)

        • http://verysmartbrothas.com The Champ

          “Your premise is faulty in that it assumes that “man-made” and the divinely influenced are mutually exclusive. Science and God are not contradictory. ”

          nodding head

          • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

            Yeah, I agree with that point too, but I still don’t think it’s necessary to be in tune with God solely through Christianity which if I’m not mistaken is a tenet of many denominations of Christianity. That’s of my 3 biggest beefs with Christianity as my own personal spiritual guide.

        • SweetSass

          Athiest do not say H20 is a coincidence. Where do you get that? All things in the universe are consequence of the big bang.

          Magnets, how do they work?

      • http://www.aworknprogress.com Diana

        What? “Faith without works is dead.” I.e., you have to be a co-laborer with God. Or as one minister put it, “if you think God will do it all for you – ask Him to brush your teeth when you get up in the morning.” You cannot for instance just pray for a job and expect one if you haven’t done your part like doing a search or sending out resumes. And anyone who calls themselves a believer and does so is foolish. Believing and relying on God is not the same as expecting Him to be your servant who has dinner on the table every night and caters to your every whim. This idea that believers are treating God like a genie is intriguing to me.

    • Carolyn Hogg

      No, God uses Vessels who he sees fit. He made and fashioned you how He saw fit to