I was on Facebook the other day, when a childhood friend made this comment:
“You’ll pray for me? OK, then, I’ll think for you.”
I know her to be a liberal, and highly educated woman. I also know that whenever someone says anything regarding Christianity (or a world view she doesn’t like), she gets upset. I thought about her comment, and against better judgement, I threw out my response:
“Can I just throw in something that will probably get me booted? Please don’t be offended when someone says they will pray for you. Hear me out here. We all have different ways of coping with hardships that our friends/loved ones are experiencing. Some of us think good thoughts. Some of us will say a prayer. Some of us will hold your hand and be there at 3am when you need to vent. We all handle things differently. THAT is what makes us all unique. That is what makes this world an amazing place.
When someone says they will pray for you, it means they care about you and want good to happen to you. They aren’t trying to shove God in your face. They are trying to say that they care for you. Personally, I don’t get offended when someone says they will think good thoughts for me. I wouldn’t be hurt if someone offered to light a candle, smoulder some incense, or even do a jig for me. They might not believe in God and prayer, as I do. That’s okay. I’m just honored that they even think of me in a good light at all. So, when someone says they will pray for you, all you have to say is “thanks”. You don’t have to believe like they do. Just be thankful that they care enough for you to want to see good things come your way.”
“When people are out there praying for the death of Obama and Mel Gibson is beating the crap out of his ex while considering a sequel to the Passion of the Christ, it tends to give a bad name to those who “pray for us”.
Clearly my previous comment didn’t hit the mark. So, I got this off my chest:
“I agree with you. However, there are bad/good people in EVERY FAITH (or no faith at all). Don’t you think? I strongly believe in “what goes around, comes around”. There are people that are condescending, self-righteous, and do not practice what they preach all over the world. We see them on the news. We have them in places of authority. We listen to them on talk radio. We see them in magazines. They author best selling books. We may even see them on a pulpit.
My faith says that when my life is done, I will answer for how I lived and treated the world. I try not to judge others by what they believe, who they voted for, who they are with in the privacy of their bedroom, and what they put into their body. I may completely disagree with what they have said/done, but I am not their judge/jury. I go about my life doing the best I can for my world & the people around me. That is who you are. This is who I am. We share this world. We are different in so many ways, but we need to get along. When my life is done, I would like others to say that I backed up my promises, loved/cared for everyone – no matter their color, age, sex, religion, political views, financial status, etc.
So to finish, I do agree with you. I think people lie to us ALL THE TIME. I do believe that we reap what we sow. No matter which side of the fence we are on. When we become dust, what will others say about how we lived? As the saying goes, make every day count. I plan on doing that. For me, that includes being a caring person that makes a positive impact. Yes, I do pray for others. I do it because I care for them. I don’t feel that I am better than anyone else. I am just going through each day making the best of what I have. Prayer helps me get through my life. It gives me comfort through the bad times and helps me to be thankful during great times. My faith helps make me who I am. It isn’t for everyone. That’s ok. That’s what makes each one of us special.”
CONCLUSION: It doesn’t matter if you don’t agree with your neighbor. Just respect that we are all given the right to believe what is in our hearts. We don’t have to agree with every idea. We just need to respect those that have them.