According to Sam and Jim Commenting on things that irk us off, make us laugh out loud or just seem too weird too believe According to Sam and Jim: Praying for Your Friends or Enemies Will Change You

Monday, April 8, 2013

Praying for Your Friends or Enemies Will Change You

I’m reading a pretty good book right now by a lady named River Jordan. The book is Praying for Strangers. Perhaps you’ve heard of it. If not, I recommend it.

In Praying for Strangers, the author tells how a New Year’s resolution to pray for a complete stranger every day of the New Year became a collection of profound experiences connecting her with other people and changing her life forever. I bought the book on impulse as I was passing through the checkout stand at the grocery store the other day.

I might not have bought the book but I had just told one of my daughters a couple of days earlier that the best way to resolve a conflict with one’s enemy was to pray for him or her. I’ve had to pray for my enemy a couple of times and I guarantee you it isn’t easy. But like the Alka Seltzer jingle says, “Oh what a relief it is.” When you turn your anger and hatred over to God and let Him take care of a situation for you, miracles can happen - as River Jordan has found out (although she wasn’t praying for enemies).

It isn’t necessary to pray for anything specific regarding your enemy - like an 18-wheeler running over him or her or a poisonous snake biting them. I confess that I am not smart enough to know what to ask for as regards my enemy. I merely lift him or her up to God and let God decide what to do. Maybe God will rain fire and brimstone down on the person, but He also might fill that person with His Grace. Suddenly being filled with God’s grace is the most wonderful thing that can happen to a person, ever.

Fortunately, I am called upon to pray for friends much more often than enemies. I realized a few years ago when God prompts me when to pray for a person. At first I was bewildered as to why I was thinking of a person so much. It could be (often was) someone that I hadn’t seen in quite a while. I would just start thinking about that person for no apparent reason and the thought would not go away and allow me to dismiss it. In desperation, to get this person out of my thoughts, I’d finally say a little prayer asking God to take care of him or her.

No, wait a minute. I have also learned not to ask God - nag him - In prayer. I thank him in advance for taking care of something or someone. Get the difference? I decided since faith is supposed to be the assurance of something hoped for, that I should just thank God for doing whatever he sees fit to do with a certain individual and I walk away sure in my own mind that the situation is being properly handled - way better than I ever could handle it.

Now, more and more frequently, I am prompted to pray for someone. Quite often even though I haven’t seen that person for a while, his or her face will come to me so forcefully I clearly remember details of the face. It’s pretty cool. Strangely enough, I’m often prompted to pray for a person when I’m daydreaming sinful thoughts. What’s that all about?!

Anyway, poop on us if we don’t pray for our enemies - even John Boehner and that guy in Korea!

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