Sometimes I wonder how many of us are living in what like to call the “4-Leaf Clover Gospel”?? Yeah we believe in God, we believe He sent His Son Jesus in to this nasty ole world to save us, we believe in the Bible (but according to this theory that may even get called into question), we believe that God’s Spirit does dwell within us – we believe “all the right things”. We even believe in prayer and that God will provide for our needs. We have no reason to believe anything else – but then HERE IT COMES – the “4-Leaf Clover Gospel”.
The other day a friend of mine was sharing some thoughts for a prayer request (now before any of you try and figure out if it was you or who it was – I’m just using this one example to represent MANY times I’ve heard comments like this – so just stop trying to find someone else and take a good hard look at your own self). In the prayer request this person said “we are just praying and keeping our fingers crossed” – WHAT??? “just praying and keeping our fingers crossed” – That’s right, that’s what they said. Now you may be sitting their in shock and horror – YOU WOULD NEVER SAY SOMETHING LIKE THAT – no but I bet you would say something like “well so far my kids and I haven’t caught this flu bug that’s been running around, knock on wood”
Now before you get all mad at me and say – “NEAL you know what they/we meant – it is just something we say, it is part of our culture, we don’t mean anything by it” – let me say – I am NOT JUDGING this person or anyone else – I know this person VERY well and know that they LOVE GOD & definitely desire for HIS will to be done – they Seek Him & His word for guidance. So yeah I know it is just “something they/we say”, but I am asking – Should it be??
Just so you know – I’m not “typing behind their back” – in that moment and that conversation I did call them out about why we would need to “pray and cross our fingers”????
You see I believe God is in control, and I believe that prayer is a POWERFUL THING that we cannot go all half-hearted into. James speaks of doubt while praying. My only conclusion can be that doubt is what we are doing if we are “praying & crossing our fingers or knocking on wood so it will/won’t come true”
My frustration is that so often I think we treat prayer & seeking God’s will like it is the “4-Leaf Clover Gospel” – we are SO LUCKY if something happens to us for the good and so UNLUCKY if something happens that really is bad or that we just deem as bad since it might not be as good as what we wanted to have happen. So maybe you don’t really feel that way, but maybe we should all just really work on removing some of those phrases from our vocabulary and give God the credit he deserves.
What thinks ye?