Monday, January 19, 2009

Thoughtless Public Prayer

Today, I want to talk about prayer. In particular, I want to talk about public prayer. Now most people have a canned prayer that they pray when the preacher calls on them to pray. I don’t think they intend to memorize a prayer, but it’s like sitting in the same pew. It is just a habit. When I was a kid, we had a Sunday school superintendent who would get up and pray the same prayer every Sunday. Being the bright kid that I was, I took it upon myself to memorize this prayer and when the time was right, I prayed his prayer.

Maybe it’s because I didn’t want some kid to return the favor, but I don’t pray the same prayer each time I am asked to pray. The other night, after business meeting, I could tell by the way our pastor looked across the auditorium at me that he was about to ask me to pray. Now there are always good things to pray about in a public prayer. There are the sick, the lost, the ministries of the church and any number of other things. I wasn’t thinking about any of these. It could be that I was still thinking about how the sermon applies to my life or I could have been thinking about something I needed to give to one of our church members or it could be I was thinking about an attractive woman. I’ll let you take your pick of which one it was. It doesn’t really matter which it was. All I can say is that when I opened my mouth, the words came out all jumbled.

Why do I mention this? Is there some great truth we can learn from this? I doubt it. I just thought it was funny and someone might enjoy reading about it.