“A Prayer Request”

A PRAYER REQUEST WORTH LOOKING AT

I received the following prayer request last week. I spent a lot of time praying and thinking about it. I have never refused to post a prayer request before, but I finally did on this one. The author and I spoke about it more than once and I believe he is a really nice person and I do not stand in doubt of him. I post the prayer request here, not as an indictment of him, but as a thought provoker for you. 

Have you ever prayed a selfish prayer? Sure you have, we all have. But as we pray daily and grow in the Lord, we should turn our prayers outward more and more. The below is a real event and again, I use it as food for thought for you. 

Ben



My name is JL. 

I'm an University student. Standing firm on the God's promise, in Psalms 81:10, I will open my mouth wide. Please, pray for me so that in the process of waiting I wouldn't lose heart or be discouraged. 

1. I want to be a prominent speaker for God. 
2. I want to get my JD/MBA degree at the HARVARD UNIVERSITY. 
3. I want to lose weight down to 162 lbs and stay there, period. 
4. I want to have Cash Flow of quarter of a million-plus, each month, not from a church, not even a penny, but from my own business. 
5. I want the LATEST, DARK-RED, FOUR DOOR, BMW, vinyl interior, AM-FM Cassette-CD, AC, Sun-Roof, Power-Everything, and of course with Stick. 
6. Most of all, I want a Godly wife. 

Above are my specific requests... MAY THE ONE AND ONLY LIVING GOD FULFILL HIS PROMISE. AMEN.



JL, 

I have been unable to decide what to do with your prayer request. I sent it to a friend of mine, and he thought you were joking and just having fun pulling my leg. I'm not sure I see that though. I have included his response below. 

Let's see what Holy Scripture says about our needs. 

2 Chronicles 7:14 "If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." 

Humble yourself, JL, and seek God. 

The next verses after the Psalm 81:10 you quoted shows that the verse, Psalm 81:10 is not a promise of being fed, but is, in fact, damnation for failure to hear God's voice, ignoring God and refusing to walk in the counsel of God. Verse 15 and 16 shows that if they would have obeyed, they would have been fed, but because they were haters of God, they were not. 

Ps 81:10 I [am] the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it
11 But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me. 
12 So I gave them up unto their own hearts' lust: [and] they walked in their own counsels. 
13 Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, [and] Israel had walked in my ways! 
14 I should soon have subdued their enemies, and turned my hand against their adversaries. 
15 The haters of the LORD should have submitted themselves unto him: but their time should have endured for ever. 
16 He should have fed them also with the finest of the wheat: and with honey out of the rock should I have satisfied thee. 

You started out saying, "Standing firm on the God's promise, in Psalms 81:10, I will open my mouth wide.". I do not think you want anything to do with that verse as far as the Israelites did. It was a promise of that which was not given. 

I would rather see you on your face, seeking God's Face, having humbled yourself and crying out to him for forgiveness. Ask His will for your life and stop being so completely selfish. That prayer I would post, this one I refuse. 

God bless you, Ben 

From my friend.. 

This Kid has a bad ignorance problem. He could not possibly be serious about being posted could he? I just thought, To get a Godly wife he should try to be a Godly person first. Not a novice, greedy, covetous, proud, and unlearned in the scriptures, etc. Maybe you could send this to him and tell him that anyone else reading his statement would come up with the same conclusion.? 

JL, I have not included this to hurt you, but to help make you see that you seek earthly things. God will not grant that, He grants Heavenly things. Are you a Blood-bought, born-again Christian? Just wondering.



Dear, Ben (Sir): 

Thank you very much for you and your friend's *earnest* comments. Yes, I can see why you were so quick to "judge" my faith in God who 'sent his one and only son so that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.' 

Nobody "judged" you. God's Written Word was given to us, so that as saints in Christ we have a way of weighing that which we see and do to that which we were commanded to do. How often when someone is shown he is in error he immediately screams, "YOU'RE JUDGING ME!" Nonsense, God has judged you already, it's to late for us. 

Sir, it's true that we should all, and I will, praise God, with joyful hearts, no matter what the present circumstances might be; for our life is nothing compared to our ETERNAL LIFE which God has prepared for us, just like a grain of sand on a beach... Please, do correct me if I'm wrong for the things which I'm about to say...and please do not be mad at me. 

Nobody here is mad at you. While my friends letter I sent you was terse in tone, it was indeed beneficial in two ways. First, it made you think and evaluate your request and two, it showed me that your heart was for God because it takes some spark to write back as you have. 

1.I have bumper stickers on my 1980 Honda Accord, front and back which says "God Rules". But, have you ever seen any Christian who would dare to "ruin" their expensive car with their faith in Christ with big bumper stickers, except with puny fish emblems? Or, when they do declare there faith in Christ, they're on their pathetic, used, rusted, old, dirty, piece of scrap which they say "it's a car." I am ashamed of myself, because my car does not "deserve" the bumper stickers. 

The problem is this. I know some wealthy people who call themselves Christian. But they do not conduct themselves as God's Word says. So I tend to look at people and as the Written Word says, I know them by their fruits, not their car or statements of faith. You are correct, your car does not deserve bumper stickers with the precious name of Jesus on them. No car in the world does. The name of Jesus is above all names and should be breathed by every living person, continually. The shame is that we have to use any bumper stickers to try to get the unchurched to "know" Jesus. The additional shame would be if you didn't have the bumper stickers at all, and the size does not count. God will honor you more because of these bumper stickers then all the quarter million dollars per month will ever honor you. Asking for earthly money to help you honor Jesus is like like having 
a pet skunk. It smells bad to everyone but the skunk. 

2."I lost my job and got into a car accident. I need to pay $300 for the damage but I don't have the money. But, I'm sure God will deliver me because I need that money within 5 days from today. Please pray for me." (Wouldn't you say above request is ridiculous, absurd, averse, detestable, and ludicrous to God?) (Let him sell his car and take the bus!) 

I would not say a prayer stating that you are in trouble and asking God's help is wrong. That is not what you did in your previous prayer requests. You asked for gain. I understand having troubles. I was ran over by a car a while back. I am many thousands of dollars in debt still because of it. I lost my $70,000 a year, plus bonuses, job. I am in fairly constant pain and always bothered by worry of financial problems. So I have asked God to spare me the earthly worries by using me 100% of the time in His service. I now operate this ministry on the web, I preach at a retirement home and do a Bible study there 8 times a week. I preach at the Mel Trotter Mission and at the Sheriffs Honor Camp to the prisoners there. I also do most of the publishing of printed material for my church and operate it's prayer chain so the saints in our church get prayed for continually. So far, God has delivered me from all of the earths problems because I seek to serve Him as He wants. 

I'd rather be the mover and the shaker of this country as a Christian, than some servile, timid, "lazy" Christian. 

Some timid, servile Christians simply go to church and worship Christ on the Lord's day. This must seem awful to you that they are obedient to His Word and do this. They sometimes talk to others about Christ and the others get saved on occasion. This must seem awful that they do it quiet and in a servile manner and not in direct disobedience that the heretic Benny Hinn or Oral Roberts does. Yes, they are loud and flashy, lots of cash, great cars, top of the heap. I must seem pathetic to you. I am simply a servile Christian who preaches the Gospel every single second I can. 

So maybe you can call me a servile, timid, "lazy" Christian. I am bothered that I have spare time on my hands and whenever I do satan tries to break my walk with God. Tell me about all you do for Jesus besides placing stickers on your car. 

For even in the Old Testament, God, not only used the ones he has chosen, but also lifted the ones who stood up for their faith in Him, and God did not let them down. 

On the surface I can agree with this. But as I look deeper into these mens lives I see great sorrow. Jacob had an entire country named for him, yet his greed caused him to never again see his beloved mother. David was a king, but lost his children and was the most repentant man named in the Scriptures. He would have gladly traded his money for another start. And so it goes... Also, these men, as you stated, were chosen by God, never the other way around, I have never known of a great preacher who was not "called" by God and I have never known of a great preacher who thought he was. 

3. It is my heart's desire to achieve higher status in the secular world, so when other people see what I do, they won't be able to say "He turned to God's service because he wasn't up to the challenges which this world has to offer." 

There lies the start of your fall. You "desire to achieve higher status". Billy Graham desired that and is todays greatest heretic. Jim Baker desired that and has recently been released from jail. Jimmy Swaggert desired that and twice admitted his shame of being with prostitutes on nationwide TV, causing shame to Christianity. And, unfortunately, this list continues far to long. To be worried by what people think is one of the root causes of todays apostasy. If you care one inch what others think about the reason you might chose to become a Christian "leader", then I beg you not to. You will bend to the desires of what others think and you will pervert God's Word and desires, to suit what other's think. You will help destroy Christianity. (By the way, your above statement also shows the lack of honor you give to Pastors.) 

I believe that Christians should be the ones who lend to thousands, not the other way around. Is it wrong to be blessed by God, materially? If it is then please erase all those who were blessed by God starting with ABRAHAM... 

Show me where Abram went to anyone or to God and said, "Make me a great man of wealth so others can see your might". I don't think so. Every single great man that God used and often times gave earthly blessings to was a wretch who deserved shame. They most all wanted nothing to do with serving God. Some ran and hid from him. Others, like Moses, refused, then made excuses that their speech was too poor. Their blessings came, generally after serving or after they started obeying God, and mostly at a price (Moses never got any blessings of earthly riches, does that make him not a man of God?). Look at Solomon. Can you say God blessed Him? He was rich, but oh what a price. Abraham was a liar to say the least. Why God chooses some people to serve Him I have no idea. But I cannot find a lot of people flocking to him to serve Him in the O.T., some even served Him to avoid being fish food. 

4. Please, DO NOT TRY TO MOLD THE ONE AND ONLY SOVEREIGN GOD INTO YOUR CAST, FOR GOD IS GOD... HE DOES NOT WORK ACCORDING TO OUR (YOU AND I) LIMITED KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING. Just who are we to say "NO, God does not work that way...?" 

We do not say that. God does. You need more time in His Word, as do I. God uses a repentant heart. Pride is not His way. He says to seek His face, not his blessings and not His money. He ask us to honor and serve, not to be flashy and public. Calling a fish symbol "puny" is so prideful on your part that it makes me want to spank you. What if someday you are talking to someone who has a fish on their car and it took years to have the courage to put it there? Do you think that statement will help them become bolder Christians? If they placed the fish there as the boldest thing they were able to do to publicly proclaim Christ, their act will be greatly honored, much more than your "raise me up as someone special" prayer. God does not work that way. It's a far statement, because the Bible tells us so. 

p.s. Please, spur your friend to read the Bible more carefully, each day. I'm sure your friend will find plenty of verses where God clearly promises of his blessings both heavenly and earthly... (He might start with blessing of keeping "Sabbath") 

My friend, Gaylon is a former pastor, missionary. He currently preaches around Texas on an invitational basis, his knowledge of God's Word is very good and, yes, sometimes it shows that disobedient Christians, or false professors, bother him (that's what I like best about him). 

I'll challenge you instead. Tell me where God says He promises earthly blessings that would raise one up to a public status with great amounts of cash, great cars, and flashiness. Tell me where God says, "Seek me out and I'll make you rich". Tell me where. You have fallen for Pat Robertson's, "Health and wealth" gospel. 

As for the blessing of keeping the "Sabbath", if you consider keeping the sabbath important, you are confused. Christ did away with all the commandments and NONE of them are required. 

"Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second [is] like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." Matthew 22:37-40 There are other places where Jesus also stated that the Sabbath was to serve man, not man serving the sabbath. Mark 2:27. To believe you must keep the sabbath, you must believe Christ was a liar. 

I urge you to stop worrying about earthly things and about serving the Sabbath. There are some churches that teach this false doctrine, but as with all such cults, they will be burned with the chaff. I would be glad to send you more information on this item if you want it. (or any item). 

JL, I do not believe the above is harsh or that I am mad at you. I do not know what church you attend so I will not ask you to talk to your pastor about this. He may be much of the problem, I don't know. I do know that your reasons for wanting great amounts of cash from God are suspect to say the least. The Apostle Paul had, maybe, the greatest effect on the spreading of the Gospel of anyone after Christ. To the best of my knowledge he never owned anything. He did work as a lowly tent maker during his time of preaching to keep food in the belly I presume. He died when he was beheaded. If you want to be a GREAT CHRISTIAN pray that God will make you a Paul. Poor of earthly things, rich in the blessings of the Gospel. Ask God that the message you sow will become a great harvest that souls may be saved and unlike todays false "Christian Leaders", so many of the TV evangelist, ask God to never let you know how many people are saved by your work. That way you will never get a swelled head at how much you are worth to Him. 

If you have no pastor, send me your phone number and I will find a pastor in your area to call you. Some local leadership seems like a good prescription for you right now. I'll help all I can. 

Take up your cross and follow Him daily. 

"Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me." Matthew 16:24 

"Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me." Mark 10:21 

"And he said to [them] all, If any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me." Luke 9:23 

God bless you, Ben 



Dear: Sir. 

1. You are 100% correct, although I still want to argue a little... 
2. Your corrections were very accurate and true. 
3. I'm not involved with any cult. 
4. Ever since I was a child, I've been attending a Presbyterian church. 
* Will you pray for me so that I could truly deny myself? 

Ps. it makes me angry overtime I look at things that are happening in this country. 

JL, I have never been 100% right about anything in my life except I was a lost sinner and now I'm a saved sinner. I do appreciate your heart on this matter though. 

*Will you pray for me so that I could truly deny myself? 

Absolutely, without a doubt. 

Ps. It makes me angry every time I look at things that are happening in this country. 

It's good to know we are citizens of heaven and not of this world. 

It's been good talking with you JL. You come across as a nice person. I'm glad you know Jesus and that we had this time to discuss issues. Drop back by often, I have several Bible studies I am putting on the site and many tracts. 

God bless you, Ben 



To all, When I read the above exchange I see a really nice person in JL. He wants to learn and grow in the Lord and maybe someday God will raise him up as a public preacher. If that happens, I pray he will not fall into the trap of "fame" that so very many of todays "TV" and "stadium" preachers fall into. Pray that JL will stay with the truth and avoid the pitfalls of compromising the truth of the Written Word for money, cars, and fame.