Can I Pray for You?

For anyone who really thinks this is a question, try and say no sometime.

Awkward, right?

I can’t help but wonder what someone is really saying when they ask me to pray for them. First of all, I can’t see it as anything but some intriguing form of “Christian-ese”. Of course it all depends on how you see prayer – I understand it as a conversation between God and the …pray-ee. Sorry, couldn’t think of a better word.

If that’s the case, then the question is, much more literally, “Can I talk to my God about you?” To me this sounds ridiculous; am I alone in that? Why should I have to give you permission to talk to God about me? Who am I, and in what place am I to stop you from doing it. Would it stop you? Would it encourage you? But I wonder if that’s really the point at all…

I see it as a cry for attention. They want to know that you know that they are going to pray for you. Does that creep anyone else out? To me that’s the same as telling the waitress how much of the tip was yours – or your kids that you spent more time on their Christmas presents than their mother. What’s the point? Why do it?

I still can’t think of anything.

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5 thoughts on “Can I Pray for You?

  1. Many people believe in the power of prayer and see it as something more than just talking to God and asking Him to be nice to whomever they pray for. As for me, I feel comforted when I know people are praying for me. Other people I’ve talked to have said the same.

  2. No offense or anything Monica, but I think you missed the entire point of what Ryan is saying here.

    This blog was spawned after a conversation we had concerning the motives a person has when making that comment (“Will you pray for me”). It has nothing to do with the ‘power of prayer’–I fully believe in that power, but I don’t believe in people abusing this power.

  3. Thanks for the support Ash – but I would ask for clarification as to “abusing the power” of prayer. I’m not sure exactly how you are using that.

    And Monica, I think I understand what you are saying. It may be nice to know someone is praying for you – from that respect it can be a good thing to ask someone (or as I see it, to tell someone) if you can pray for them. I see that. But try and consider it in the way I’m saying – isn’t it possible that that is the case?

  4. I agree that I’d like more clarification about abusing prayer. And I do understand what Ryan is saying here, it just seems to be really cynical and saying that everyone who says something like that is just wanting attention. I know it happens; I’ve seen it and I’ve probably done it. I guess Ryan seems to be coming off more cynical and pessimistic, while I’m more optimistic and naive, but we’re saying the same thing.

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