Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Walked out on Prayer

Have you ever walked out on a prayer? I've been places where someone in front has been speaking or teaching on a particular subject that was controversial, and witnessed people get up and leave in a sort of protest. What was being said was offensive to them so they left. I get that I guess, though I've never done it. I've always felt that we need to hear people through completely before we make assumptions about them. That reminds me of a time I was in chapel at Biola University when a speaker did his whole message as though he were Muslim. He argued for the Koran, and did the whole thing. Well, one student sitting near me was clearly getting agitated. He happened to be Asian - English was not his first language, and he clearly wasn't getting the fact that this guy was pretending to be Muslim in order to teach about what Muslim's believe. Well this poor guy stood up and yelled about how bad this guy was, and that he should worship Jesus instead of Allah, and stormed out of the gymnasium. It was all rather strange really. But I digress...

I was involved recently in a time of prayer with some people and it was the first time in my life that I considered getting up and leaving. And it was during prayer for crying out loud! What is the appropriate response to a prayer you disagree with? Do you pray back in sort of a prayer battle? Or do you refuse to say "Amen"? Anyone ever experience something like this? It was a really strange place to be in to be honest, and I have no idea how I should have handled that situation. Rather than leaving, I simply remained silent, prayed silently, and when it was over I got up and left. What would you have done?


Dude, that's crazy...must have been weird. Got me thinking though. "Protests" have always confused me. People standing on the side of the road, or out in front of a building, holding signs. In Flagstaff there were always these people at City Hall with Anti-Bush/War signs...I would wonder, "Why?" As though someone was going to drive by and read the sign and be like, "Dang, you know? They're right...this was is wrong after all! All it took was seeing that sign for me to realize it." Pretty much, no. So, again, I ask. What's the point? So everyone can identify you as an objector? And what is their view of you if they already disagree with you? Yeah, so...apply to this situation. If you or I got up and walked out, what good would it do? If may make us feel better about our selves, or perhaps if there were some kind of "by being here I condone what's being said" situation...but I think the more productive action would be, if you/I care about the person, to talk to them after. Tell them, "I disagree with you on this, that, or the other, and here's why." At least get them thinking...but in the end, we need to assess if they are really going to listen to us anyhow. So, now I'm curious as to what the venue was that you almost got up and walked out of.

Hey man, I guess I would sit and pray with, God knows that I disagree. We are not always called out to make a disagreement verbal, sometimes we must just wait until people ask us what we believe. I am currently in the midst of a few people, who are much different me in their beliefs on doctrine/theology. I guess I just try to be a friend to them, although they occasionally tick me off privately. I think we honor God with our actions and thoughts, but our thoughts get us in less trouble, because others don't see them? Just a thought, uh, I mean an action...

Did you try speaking to the guy afterwards about it? Although, I know (from experience) some people just don't want to talk over issues!

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