Being in a prayer ministry I have some very, very strong opinions when I read people sarcastically tell us, “There’s been a whole lot of prayer in this country, but I haven’t seen it make a lick of difference.”
The above is from #ZackFord @ZackFord, the LGBT Editor of “Think Progress.”
In fact, I can tell you that it angers me!
In fact, it does more than angers me, it makes me clench my fist, hold my breath, stand up, and say, I AGREE WITH YOU #ZackFord @ZackFord.
Did I say that out loud? Folks he’s right.
His view is accurate.
Now I believe his view is accurate by accident. He’s got all the wrong issues on focus.
I’m looking for what can we learn from this issue. And these issues are NOT going away! I believe that this “Prayer Shaming” issue, in particular, will be with us until the Lord returns.
I found a great article that broaches the subject well and balanced. I don’t agree with everything in it, but I want to make the issue their broader point, so I will highlight a few of their comments and give you the link to read it fully for yourself.
First of all, we all know that the Apostle Paul told us to not expect those who are not following Christ to understand the things of God (1 Corinthians 2:14). So don’t be concerned about those who write the things written in the photo above. If you are trying to please man, YOUR focus is wrong.
Quoting Christianity Today
Here are some quotes from the article below that I believe that we, the church, Christ’s bride, can learn a lesson or two from (emphasis and italics by me):
A prayer penned on social media for the sake of likes, retweets and admiration is one upon which God seemingly does not look kindly. Like the ‘pics or it didn’t happen’ meme, there may be a risk of believing that a prayer is only meaningful if it is seen and amen’d by other Twitter users.
For the Christian, the distinction between prayer and action is a false dichotomy. The Bible teaches that prayer can help bring about God’s will.
We are commanded to pray for our enemies. . . Praying for those responsible for terrorism as well as those harmed by it is a reminder of the astounding, undeserved nature of grace and that God longs for the redemption of all people,
But when it comes to praying via social media, perhaps we need to be more cautious, ensuring that we are seeking to be heard by our Father in heaven, rather than our followers.
This article also had a fascinating link that shows details of “terrorist attacks listening them all by date” stating that there were “1,018 in this year alone.”
Let me make this clear, I am NOT JUDGING ANYONE who puts a prayer or note of one in their social media, I AM SAYING, check your motivation. That’s all.
Here is the article above that I have quoted from:
And here is my archived post: “Prayer Shaming” from December 2015:
Archived Prayer Shaming Post
Back in December 2015 I wrote a post that took the idea of prayer shaming in a way that seemed to go against the grain of some Christians. I want you to review that post in light of what I am writing today, on the same subject, prayer-shaming.
Here is the original link: http://www.ctmprayer.org/prayer-shaming/
And here is the post as originally written:
My conservative friends won’t like this but I completely agree with my Liberal friends when they argue “Prayer Shaming.” I think they’re right … not for the same reasons of course, but I think they’re right. We should be ashamed of our prayers.
Peggy Noonan’s Wall Street Journal Op Ed this weekend entitled “The First Amendment Needs Your Prayers” was an interesting read. But what caught my eye was the phrase “Prayer Shaming.”
Since I’m careful not to write about political issues, not because I don’t have strong political beliefs, I do, but because I believe that most Christians take politics in the wrong direction. So if you don’t mind, let me take from this political article the phrase, “Prayer Shaming” and apply it to Christians’ prayer lives. Forgive me, but in a “backdoor” sense I may actually MAKE the point for those that denigrate praying.
Let me first state why I want to stay away from the politics of this article. None of the Christians I know would say that, “Their Salvation is in politics, but,” I would add, “Many of them certainly act like it!” Now don’t get me wrong I believe that every Christian, as good stewards, should vote and should vote their conscience. And I think that ALL of them should be allowed to vote, including “young earthers” like me, regardless of what Neil Boortz says.
But here is the “Prayer Shaming” issue from my perspective. In the church we SHOULD BE ASHAMED of our prayers. And here is why, “Our focus on praying is, on WHAT WE WANT, me, me and I, I.” And I’m sorry but I do not see that in scripture. What I see in scripture Henry Blackaby wrote so well of when he said, and I’m paraphrasing, “Find out where God is moving, what He is doing, and get on His side.”
Our unbiblical praying is constantly focused on giving God advice. I’d rather you just get down on your knees to pray and close your mouth to let Him talk to you. I love Leonard Ravenhill’s famous quote, “Some of the best times I have in prayer is when I say absolutely nothing!” Remember, God doesn’t need your advice. He is the One who spoke the words and the worlds leapt into existence.
One of the talk show hosts has coined the phrase, “Shut up and sing” referring to these great musicians who spend too much of their time talking about politics. I completely agree with her but I would also include us Christians into the mix and I would say “Shut up and listen” when it comes to our praying. We might find, much to our disappointment, that God is more interested in you thanking Him for, and really loving somebody that you vigorously disagree with (Ephesians 5:20; 1 Thessalonians 5:18).
Now don’t be grumpy at me I didn’t write those verses.
Maybe if you listened to God instead of working yourself up into a frenzy because of what you see going on in our world, which I agree has numerous problems, but maybe if we listened to God more we would find that He wants us to engage those we disagree with, not for the purpose of changing their mind, but developing a relationship with them and eventually introducing them to Christ if they don’t know Him.
Here’s the bottom line that I see in the churches I speak in:
WE’RE FIGHTING THE WRONG BATTLE! And because of that fact alone we should be ashamed of ourselves.
The battle we waste our time fighting is the battle of trying to get what WE WANT! We are too busy giving God advice, telling Him how He should run the cosmos. We need to spend more time with our lips zipped shut listening to God, He doesn’t need our advice! What He wants are men and women and boys and girls who follow His Son … and I would add, following Him down a path we cannot go without listening clearly to Him.
My first novel called The Pray-ers (www.ThePray-ers.com) addresses the issue of “Troubles” in our lives through the prayer lives of three prayer heroes. They are from three continents and from three historic eras. In the book we find Thales, the nephew of Epaphras (Colossians 4:12) and Alexander Rich, the childhood friend of D. L. Moody and Dr. Dale Riley the current era pray-er hero handling problems the way scripture directs. In the book you will see them praying about troubles by listening to God and the scriptures.
But you don’t need my book to learn how to pray, just zip up your lips and listen to what God is saying to you.
Blessings my friends,