For those that like “TRUTH” here is some truth.
Prayer cannot be taken for granted or treated lightly. The “Lord’s Prayer” (the Our Father”) is frightening if you think about it.
“….Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us……”
Do you see what is being said to Our Lord? We are telling GOD that if we fail to forgive our neighbor that has offended us – then we do not want God’s forgiveness for our offenses against Him! As an example, a well meaning neighbor points out to me a bad behavior and near occasion to sin that I am committing. Maybe he is right. Maybe he is wrong. None-the-less, I respond with anger, hatred, and cruelty. I exterminate that person from my life. I never speak to that person again.
Do I really want God to forgive me my trespasses against Him in the same way? Do I really want God to respond to me with anger, hatred, and cruelty? Do I really want God to exterminate me from his existence? Do I really want God to never speak (or listen) to me again? Dear God, please continue to have more mercy for me than I have given to my neighbors.
I see only two choices. 1. Go to Hell. 2. Pray that I do a better job of forgiving my neighbor and THEN DO a better job of forgiving my neighbor. In this example, talking with my neighbor that criticized me will be a good first step that will give honor to God, and Grace to my soul.
Prayer is not a happy story to bring us a quick fix when upset over circumstances. First of all, the circumstances we are experiencing are known to God and He is allowing these experiences to happen. All our neighbors have been given a “Free Will” by God. Some of our neighbors will intentionally use this free will to do bad. Satan rejoices when people are hurt because the resulting sadness is Satan’s way to sneak unnoticed into our souls. Add anger, hatred, and cruelty to this sadness and Satan has easy entrance into our lives.
We cannot expect prayer to change circumstances as much as we should pray that prayer will change us. How we react to an injustice will determine our happiness. We need to pray that our behavior and our response to injustice (or perceived injustice) will be in keeping with the Will of God.
“ …Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil…”
We first need to change ourselves, not our neighbor and not the world. Prayer is the way to make changes in ourselves for the better with the help of God. THEREFORE, prayer requires introspection. We need to look at our weaknesses and wrongful behavior. This is not easy and a true honest examination of conscience can be down right depressing. In fact, praying harder is more depressing. This is hard work that may make us sad at times but will put us on the road to a happy eternal life. Put off the pain for now, and live the pain later and for eternity. If prayer makes us depressed and ashamed we are probably talking with God. If prayer makes us giddy and happy, we are talking to ourselves or possibly Satan.
We never know when our time here will be up. We do know that we will NEVER reach perfection here on Earth. We do know that God does not expect us to be perfect. He expects us to try to be more perfect today than we were yesterday.
As a child, I would pray that my alcoholic mother would stop drinking. She did not stop until she died. As a child I prayed for laws that would ban alcohol. The government did not ban alcohol and now Satan is adding laws to include mind altering drugs to our society.
As a child, I prayed as a child. God did hear my prayers. God gave me a righteous father that by example kept me from liquor and drugs. So, as an “Adult Child of an Alcoholic” I have some resultant insecurities but I am not a drinker…. by the grace of God. My children do not abuse alcohol. Our friends are non-drinkers or very light drinkers. My prayers were answered in that God has kept the pain of alcoholism totally away from my adult life. I feel deeply sorry for those living with an alcoholic. I thank God He has spared me this “Cross” in my adult life.
As an adult in prayer I ask that the “Sins of our Parents do not visit upon their children”. I pray that this next generation with education and the Grace of God will turn away from all self harming activity.