I have decided that I don’t believe in prayer. I don’t believe that God hears us when we speak to Him. I don’t believe that time I devote talking to God makes any difference whatsoever. It is a waste of time and I would rather do just about anything else, than to spend time on something so irrelevant as prayer. This is what I have come to realize.
Before you cry out “heresy!” I would ask, “Do you really believe in prayer?” Of course you do, you would probably say. Well so would I, even though I still don’t believe in prayer. Most of the time I really don’t believe that you do, either.
The fact is, if you and I truly did believe in prayer we would pray a lot. But, since we don’t, the only explanation is that we don’t believe in prayer. Unfortunately, if we follow this logic it would lead us to really wonder if we believe in God at all, but since that is such a frightening suggestion, we will steer clear for now and just address the topic at hand. (That way we can pretend it’s a separate issue so we can at least sleep at night.)
I suppose you are reading this thinking, “Well, I don’t know about this guy, but I know that I believe in prayer.” All I have to say is prove it. I know if someone asked me to prove it I would fail miserably. How many of us would be failing together?
But let’s just think about this for a moment. If we believed in prayer, if we actually believed that God Himself was listening very closely to what we said to Him, and not only that, but that what we said would actually cause God to act on our behalf, what would be stopping us from praying all the time? We wouldn’t be able to work, we wouldn’t be able to go to school, we would barely be able to eat, and most likely we would be unable to spend hours in front of the TV, because the God of the universe was in our living room and He actually wanted to hear what we had to say. And depending on what we said, He would actually do the things that we ask of Him.
Of course we all know that God doesn’t say yes to everything, of course we know our requests have to be for His glory. We all know that, so that’s not the point right now. The point is that if all the things the Bible says about prayer are true, most of us would radically rearrange and reprioritize our lives around prayer. Our lives would be different. Period.
How we approach everything would change. Do we want the war in Iraq to end? We would pray. Do we want to know what kind of job to have? We would pray. Do we want poverty to be eradicated? We would pray. Do we want our family member to be healed? We would pray. Do we want our non-Christian friend to know Jesus? We would pray. We would pray and pray and pray, and we wouldn’t stop because God would be listening and acting on our behalf. The entire world would be different.
It’s too bad we don’t believe in prayer. We will go on saying that we do and every once in while we will be reminded that we don’t, so we will try to pray more. Unfortunately, it won’t last long because deep down we don’t believe it makes a difference. We can’t hide it. Beliefs only mask the absence of action for so long.
I don’t believe in prayer.
You don’t believe in prayer, either.
If you disagree, prove it.