Prayer as an experiment

Wow, that sounds really awful doesn’t it, prayer as an experiment? If I were you, I might take one look at this post and wonder how I can call myself a person of faith, more specifically a Christian.

Time for some truth telling.

First let me start by saying I believe in the power of prayer for all sorts of things. I say this because I think my early prayer life was tainted, jaded in a way. The first ‘church’ I ever went to was when I was 11 or so. I went with my next door neighbor friend. The church she belonged to might be called a charismatic Christian church, the uber-evangelical kind. There was falling over by being whopped upside the head with a dose of the Holy Ghost, speaking in tongues, and a fair amount of holy twitching. When we were being taught how to pray in tongues was the first time I really felt like prayer was a sham.

On and off through my whole life, I have wondered and sometimes doubted whether my prayers could be heard or if they were ‘working’. I would not call myself a doubting Thomas, needing to see proof after each petition, but I have often wondered if I do it right, or if it makes a difference. I have petitioned for prayers from others. Typically during difficult times.

Why, if I am not sure if it works, do I keep going back, keep trying, keep asking people for something I am not sure of? Although I doubt, a lot, on some deep level, some unknown part of me, I believe in prayer. I totally buy what Jesus was sellin’ when he said ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened.

So all this is to say, right now is one of those times. No mush and gush, I am not dying, well not really. You see, I think, I hope that TODAY is day ONE of not smoking. For those of you who have quit before, you KNOW, this is no easy task. I need all the help I can get. So for reals, I ask your prayers and other ways that you would talk to the Holy Mystery on my behalf.

You see, I believe in the power of prayer. I do. But right now, I am asking to see the scars on Jesus hands and feet and the pierced side. I am doubting Thomas for today. Some might read these words and wonder if I am testing God. I am not. I just know that this is really freakin’ hard.

Come Holy Helper. I want this. Bad. Help. Please give me strength and courage to be a new creation. Help me to believe I can do this. And thanks for loving me through my doubt, for showing up, even and especially when I doubt. Amen.


20 thoughts on “Prayer as an experiment

  1. I have the utmost respect for you. I have yet to make that big jump and actually try to quit, though I really want to. I WILL say a prayer for you. Good luck

  2. thanks JJ – for the support and prayers and stop by! i’ll keep ya’ll posted. so far it is 9:19 and it was exactly 24 hours ago that I took my last 3 drags (hopefully). wow.

  3. blessings and prayers arising for this most difficult addiction. Hang in there! drink a lot of water. Stay active. I’m sure you know these things. We believe in you!

  4. seriously – you people are so awesome, welcome flamingorev! thanks for all the love and ideas and support. doing good, still off the smokes.

  5. Good luck with the quiting smoking. I’ve quit a million times, but have been smoke-free for almost 2 years. Hypnotism really worked for me. My dad always said when he quit smoking and he wanted one he told himself to wait 10 more minutes, he kept doing it over and over and eventually, he didn’t do it anymore.
    I’ve never question prayers. It seems they always get answered the right way, even if I don’t realize it at the time. Best of luck!

  6. Your biggest fan is prayin’ real hard for you!–and loving you no matter what happens with prayer or smoking. But you know I’m a believer in amor vincit omnia in all situations, so I say cancel-cancel to all the rest : )

  7. you don’t need God. You can do this. It is ultimately YOU that will decide whether or not to pick up another cigarette. Good Luck.

  8. you don’t need God. You can do this. It is ultimately YOU that will decide whether or not to pick up another cigarette. Good Luck.

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