While in the Christian faith, I was always told…..
“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” – James 5:16
This meant that I had to be right in “God’s” eyes in order for my prayers to be answered. Also meaning, on the flip-side, if I wasn’t righteous enough then my prayers wouldn’t get answered.
I was also taught to end prayers in ‘Jesus’ name so that it can be delivered successfully, since ‘Jesus’ was supposed to be the intercessor for the Saints.
In 2015, I stepped away from religion for good. This was after about 18 years of consistent church membership and participation in religious activities.
Previously I made a post about misconceptions pertaining to my journey away from Christianity. If you didn’t catch that post, click here to review the details.
So to follow up with that post, I wanted to address more misconceptions which relate to this above scripture, and also the topic of love and peace. This will be long! So I would suggest reading this during a time where you can dedicate at least 30-40 minutes to digesting the thoughts that I have on this topic.
Since I have left religion, are my prayers still getting answered? Who am I praying to? Does prayer still work? Do I have peace without religion? Can I practice true love without religion?
I want to save the best for last. So first, I want to raise a question when it comes to this idea of peace and love. Christians are taught that in order to have true peace you must have the Christian God in your life and heart. The doctrine states that in order to have true LOVE, you must know the love of GOD.
1 John 4:7-8 (KJV)
7 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
Now, I do want to make one thing clear before beginning this discussion about the God of the Bible. According to the Bible, it is impossible to determine who “God” is. The many discrepancies and various mood swings throughout it can leave a reader utterly confused.
One example is the context of these two verses……….
(2 Samuel 24:1) And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah.
(1 Chronicles 21:1) And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.
So is Satan the Lord? Was this a typo or mistranslated? This shows that the Bible is not inerrant like most have been programmed to believe.
Also, this term of ‘lord’ was given to other males in the Bible. Sara called Abraham her lord.
“Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. -1 Peter 3:6”
In present day, Queen Elizabeth II is coined the title Lord or Lady of Mann.
Clearly, it is way too tasking to depend on SCRIPTures to allow a person to learn who “God” or the “Lord”, as in a Creator, is. So let’s go within and use some common sense/intuition for a minute.
How can I know the Creator of myself if I never met he/she/them/it? Simple. If a child is adopted and they never knew their birth parents, they can assume that they have at a minimum a mother and a father. Because looking at nature, it takes a male’s sperm and a female’s ovum to reproduce life. We learned that in sex education. And for those of us engaging in intercourse, we know there’s a possibility of creating a human being if that pullout game isn’t in tact! LOL! I digress!! So the first part of the puzzle is figured out.
Next, the child will probably begin to ask their foster parents questions about their biological parents. Where was I born? How did you find me? Who were my parents? Questions get answered. And then the child gets older and does a DNA test to find their biological parents. Regardless of the time that has transpired, that child will still have a biological connection to their birth parents. And their questions will always lead them to the truth of their identity.
I have a close friend who is not affiliated with any religion. She was adopted as a child and as an adult had no recollection of her mother. But she had an experience during a healing retreat in Peru where she envisioned her birth mother. And it brought her solace.
So, in essence, it’s the same with a spiritual Creator, if that is what you choose to believe in. If I never had the Bible to connect me to “God”, I would still know this Creator because my spirit is connected to it just like I am forever connected to my earthly parents. No religion can introduce me to the Creator. Christianity gives us a name that didn’t even exist until 400-500 years ago. So calling upon a name puts me in a boxed supernatural experience instead of introducing me to the ALL, EVER-PRESENT, Great Spirit. This idea of calling upon a name to get answers to questions or to get wishes granted is not really necessary in my opinion. At least not in my reality.
According to the scripture, I have to know God in order for me to know love. For me, if God is the Creator of me, then he/she/it/they reside IN me. Just by using the physical reality as an example. Can my mother or father get mad at me for wrongdoing and whoop their DNA out of me? LMAO. I know that some parents wish that this were a thing. But no matter how much a child embarrasses you or acts in opposition to your counsel, that is still your blood running through their veins. So the same is true of a spiritual Creator, if that is what you choose to acknowledge. The spiritual DNA or blueprint that we were made with will ALWAYS live in us. No “sin” (whatever that is) or opposition of a man-made Bible can separate a person from the Creator of creation. Every single part of creation has an everlasting connection to the maker of it. Whether we believe in a religion or do not subscribe to a religion, one thing that we share is we all were created! And we’re here on this earth together!!
So now that I have a connection with “God”, because I’m familiar with my own spirit, then surely I can comprehend what love is. Through my earthly Creators, I know exactly what unconditional love is.
I have never seen my father face to face. This has been a part of my life path to go through adolescence with an absence of an earthly father’s presence. But I swear to you, when I see this man I’m going to hug him as tight as I can! Because I love him with all of my heart! I love him in spite of his flaws or mishaps. He is my father and he created me! Did I have to set eyes on him in order to love him? No. In a way, I have already experienced him because his DNA is in me. My mom tells me all the time that I laugh just like him. SO YES, you can love a person that you have never seen especially when they are a segment of your very existence. You can love a person whose name you never knew, because their DNA in your vessel is evidence of their existence.
My mother loved me enough not to abort me. She loved me enough to provide shelter, clothing, and food for me…even at times where she had to write hot checks to make it happen. I admire her strength being a single mother raising 4 children on her own. There were times that she wouldn’t eat to insure that her children had enough nutrition. Now if that isn’t a representation of unconditional love, then I don’t know what is. Since I have visualized this type of love in my life experience, I do comprehend the emotion of LOVE.
Let’s just pause for a second and think about all the mothers across the planet that have given birth. Any mother that has given birth can TRULY share a testament of experiencing “LOVE” when finding out another human soul is developing in their uterus. That love is further justified when seeing the baby’s face for the first time.
Now that I have two children of my own and a life partner, I practice unconditional love on a day to day basis. Of all the craziness we have been through as partners, I wake up and still enjoy moments with this man! Not only did we create two beautiful beings together, but we are also best friends. So we could never do anything to each other to lose unconditional love. We may one day lose the desire to be partners, but the unconditional love will still be there since we share a special bond.
And what about animals? Did they need to read the Bible to know what love was? Absolutely not. Here’s a video I saw on social media of a mother gorilla embracing and kissing her child after giving birth. You can feel the love radiating through the video.
It comes supernatural to animals just as it comes supernaturally to humans. Humans are the only species on the planet that believe we must READ in order to comprehend the emotion of LOVE. LOVE doesn’t have to be taught. Just like being angry, sad, HONEGRY (my ebonics of the word hungry, lol), or being happy doesn’t have to be taught. We are born with these basic instincts to feel energies.
Love, according to the Christian religion, is given only when commandments are followed. Because if you transgress against the commandments, you risk being punished by fire and brimstone during the judgement. That, to me, isn’t true unconditional love. I couldn’t imagine punishing my babies with fire, abuse, or some other form of torture for not following after the things that I have taught them. I am here to be their guardian and give them guidance. But I don’t believe in punishing them for following their own life paths.
So the statement that we, as non-conformers of religion, do not know what the emotion of LOVE is since we left Christianity is false. It is another statement that just does not hold water.
How do I have peace without following religion or Bible scriptures? This is easy as well. According to a poll done by ABC News, 83% of U.S. citizens identify as Christians. Yet, compared to Bahrain, Japan, and Singapore (who largely practice Islam, Shintoism, Buddhism) the U.S. has a higher incidence of crime. Excessive crime in a particular area, from my standpoint, means that there is no PEACE. As a matter of fact, due to the ongoing injustices and maltreatment of lower class citizens, a common slogan rings in the ears of many across the United States..”No justice, no peace.” So this should prove that PEACE is not contingent on the Christian religion.
noun: peace:freedom from disturbance; quiet and tranquility.freedom from or the cessation of war or violence.freedom from civil disorder.mental calm; serenity.
I have peace daily by living in a peaceful environment. Where I currently live, I awaken to birds singing each morning. I wake up to natural sunlight permeating through my windows. I am surrounded by nature, which gives me peace. I also have a tattoo of peace as a reminder that I create my own peace and serenity. And that love is a rhythm or vibration, similar to melodic tones, that triggers a certain sentiment….it’s simply an energy in motion (e-motion).
Peace is based on an individual’s perspective when it pertains to a mental calmness. If I desire to live by the ocean, and I’m actually able to live that reality, then that will bring me peace. If I desire to be alone in my own space, and I am able to accomplish that, then this will bring me peace.
The color green has also been associated with tranquility due to its representation of nature. Costa Rica is listed as a ‘Blue Zone’ because its inhabitants live measurably longer lives. This is possibly due to the tropical forests that are present on the landmass. Lots of trees means lots of oxygen and clean air, since forests are essential to purifying the air. Maybe it’s their lifestyle/dietary habits that bring them peace. And also, Costa Rica has had a military-free society since 1948. So using all of this, I can attribute peace in a given area to the people and their actions. Although it may sound pleasant to attribute religion to peace, this is largely not accurate across the world.
Many indigenous civilizations were actually living in peace BEFORE being introduced to Christianity. If we do the appropriate research, it’s not hard to identify this. The indigenous population of North America (Turtle Island) respected nature and therefore lived in harmony with other parts of creation. They didn’t need Christianity in order to use their senses to feel-ize their environment. Peace means there is a freedom from war or violence. Christianity all over the earth has been synonymous with WAR AND VIOLENCE. Because the Bible justifies the seizing of land and genocide in the book of Deuteronomy…their “GOD” tells them to create an environment of non-peace. So this is why colonizers felt it was their “right” to go all over the earth conquering in the name of the Lord.
Isaiah 45:7 says… “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.”
Christians are spewing statements that we, as non-conformers to religion, do not comprehend what peace is! This God is basically bragging on the fact that he creates peace and evil. So the Christian God is not ALL about creating peace, as ‘he’ says so himself. This God wants to be worshiped with all of the calamity that ‘he’ causes, yet there are secular civilizations in present day that are living in peace WITHOUT the necessity of worshiping anyone/anything.
LASTLY, let’s address this idea of prayers only being answered by those of the Christian faith.
What is prayer?
The word etymology of the word, pray, is to “ask earnestly, beg………….. from PIE root *prek- “to ask, request, entreat.”
William Shakespeare uses this phrase, “I pray you,” or something to this extent. And it simply means, “I beg of you” or “I ask of you.”
A synonym for the word ‘prayer’ is ‘orison’. Orison is related to the word ‘orate’, which means to speak formally or to speak passionately.
Praying, from my perspective, is basically saying word phrases aloud or in your mind. It is stating the things that you desire in your reality….verbalizing intentions. It often times involves asking for things. But it doesn’t always have to mean that.
I once believed that you had to be righteous in order to receive the things that are asked in prayer, according to the scripture I referenced at the top of this post. But this is a very disturbing teaching that is being taught to our youth. This basically says that for the homeless who are on the street praying for a home, they aren’t righteous enough to get their prayers answered. For the babies who are in the hospital dying of cancer or other childhood illnesses, their parents must not be righteous enough to get healing for their babies. This says that for slaves who converted into Christianity during reformation, they must not have been righteous enough to have their prayers answered. Because some of them were still hung and burned after Sunday services. And they were still placed in oppressive states…laws were passed to keep them in this perpetual circle of mental and physical enslavement. When a person acknowledges the fact that many prayers go unanswered, it will be obvious to see the selfishness when speaking the phrase, “the prayers of the righteous availeth much.”
A lot of self-proclaimed Pastors speak of supernatural experiences happening to the “Saints.” But I’m here to tell you that it happens to so-called “sinners” or “non-Saints” as well! Supernatural just means above nature…divine. It denotes that things are happening in the lives of people that cannot be explained by the laws of nature. If you read my post about why I left religion, I explained that while living in Louisiana, I came in contact with other forms of “spirits” or life that was inexplicable….things that weren’t even in the Bible! So I guess you could say that my spiritual experiences have been superBIBLICAL LOL! Because nothing that I experienced could be found in the Bible. And that is one of many reasons why I cannot hold myself hostage to a book that doesn’t answer the questions pertinent to my evolution on this planet.
So does prayer work? And how? I can only give my interpretation of this phenomenon.
For me, speaking thoughts aloud has always worked. For example, last year I spoke some thoughts aloud requesting for a friend to be sent in my path who had a similar journey as myself. I wanted to be friends with someone who wasn’t religious and who could actually teach me more about living a holistic lifestyle. I wanted to change up my eating habits so that I could improve my health…..all that good stuff. I didn’t pray in the name of ‘Jesus’ or any God for that matter. I didn’t even say Amen. I just spoke my desires into the air.
Literally days later, a lady contacted me via Facebook. She wanted to know more about living abroad. We went from messaging online to exchanging numbers. The first time we’d spoken over the phone, we were talking for about 4 hours!! We both felt an instant connection as if we were long lost sisters.
Long story short, I basically spoke her into my reality. Because I was serious in my intentions, and believed strongly that what I had spoken would happen, I was able to manifest this friendship quickly. But it was a previous video that I had posted online in reference to living in Mexico which allowed her to find me. So this is the self work that I had to do previous to getting a ‘prayer’ answered. I had to put something out in order to receive what I wanted. It’s similar to the input and output equation that we learned in math. You have to input something in order to get a desired outcome.
My sister, who is an artist, is another example of how her ‘prayers’ initiated another part of creation to respond to her wishes. She was in need of additional income to support her family through her entrepreneurship. One day, she discovered that she had a flat tire on her SUV. Within hours, a gentleman was paying for her family’s meal at Sonic. In the midst of that, a lady came up to her and gifted her with an additional $10 for her meal. She was able to give the carhop a tip from this money that was given to her. She gave him the residual of the money from the meal payment.
Through the gentleman’s AAA membership, he was able to connect my sister to a service that temporarily fixed her tire. Upon leaving, he gave her $100 to help pay for the cost of a new tire. When she arrived at the shop, she discovered that the tire was covered under warranty. So she didn’t have to pay anything for the tire. The $100 that she was given was utilized to show appreciation to the generous helpers. She was able to purchase art supplies to paint them a beautiful picture. In essence, with every thing that she was given, she gave back in another way. If she believed the idea of not being “righteous” enough to be helped, then she would not have welcomed this generosity from strangers or even return the favor to someone else.
This is why the teaching of being “unworthy” is malicious to our society. Supernatural experiences can happen and IS HAPPENING to everyone. Many attribute this to the law of attraction. Others attribute it to their belief system. Some say it’s our own mind that’s shaping our reality to believe that it’s something outside of ourselves granting wishes. Some literally use input and output calculations in their lives to get to a desired outcome. Whatever credence is given to, the fact is that it does happen for a lot of people, even those outside of religion. Why? Because we are all connected to the same source.
I personally believe prayer is simply speaking the things that you desire into the Universe. Because all of creation is connected, another human being is able to respond to the things that you requested. And to be quite honest, sometimes an animal responds to our requests! Although they cannot verbalize, “Hey! I’m here to help you,” how many times have we felt sad or depressed and a random puppy comes up and loves all over us? All of creation is simply helping to fill needs in each others’ lives.
I refuse to boast on a Creator loving me MORE and showing FAVOR to me by having things manifest for me every time when there are millions of other people wishing for food, clothes, and shelter…the basic necessities of life. When this is spoken, it actually gives credit to a selfish Creator parent that loves some creation more than other parts of creation.
All of those whom are proclaiming this, and are a part of the Christian faith, are actually unstudied in their own belief system.
Hezekiah Walker sings a song that throws FAVOR in the face of unbelievers…
“My character, my integrity, my faith in God (He favors me)
Will not fall, will not bend, won’t compromise (God favors me)”
But it’s not his fault. He was only acting on emotions and regurgitated phrases. Because the Bible he believes says otherwise…
For God does not show favoritism.
So does ‘prayer’ or invocations only work for Christians? I’m going to go ahead and say this one has been debunked.
If all we needed to do was speak a special name in order for things to come to fruition, then no Christian should ever go to the hospital to seek a doctor since all illnesses can be healed in the name of Jesus. We should be able to pull the plug on all Christian patients in the hospital so that we can visualize the supernatural healing happening. No Christian should ever receive Chemotherapy when the laying of hands can be done to remove cancer or other diseases. Is that not what is taught in the doctrine?
Or, can we just call it a truce and say that these things are not happening because of an affiliation to a belief. Rather, it is the person’s own strong will and consistency to attain the things they desire.
People who pray for healing go to the hospital because they trust that doctors will heal them, not Jesus. Those who use herbs for healing are trusting creation to restore their bodies. But even holistic healing involves changing some habits to create alkalinity in the body. Some personal work has to be done.
Okay, you prayed for a car and got it. Maybe it was your credit score and a down payment that made it happen? Maybe it was because you actually went to the dealership to look for a car that inspired the end result of you walking away with a vehicle? If prayer alone works, then pray for a vehicle and wait for someone to pull up in your driveway with it. That would prove the supernatural ability of prayer alone working.
Okay, you prayed for a house and you received that. What were your actions that led up to that moment? Did you contact a realtor or search online for a home? Most likely, you did something for the end result to be a home leased in your name. The home didn’t just appear like a mirage in the desert. You did some work. And you had the final decision on whether that home would be yours by saying yes to certain loan or leasing terms.
Okay, you prayed for a job and you got it. Did you put in a job application? Or did someone just knock on your door and say, “Hey, here’s a job!”
You prayed for a degree and received it. Well, it was probably because you applied to school, first and foremost. And then you actually passed all of your exams so that you could receive a degree, the same way you did in grade school. There was no supernatural degree dropped in your lap. It happened based on your actions.
Believing that a Pastor has the ability to speak “supernatural blessings” over your life is DANGEROUS. Most of them know exactly what they are doing but will not let you in on the secret, because you have willingly given them authority over your circumstances and the credit for all the wonderful things that happen in your life.
You heard your Pastor say that someone in the congregation would be married within a year. Then a guy walks up to you and starts spitting that fire game! Since you already put the idea into your mind that someone would be married within a year, you begin to think that this must be your husband, right? You guys date. And then you actually plan your wedding a year from the time your Pastor spoke those words to you. You have just been duped my sister or brother. Because you allowed another fallible human being to TELL YOU what to do with your life.
You believed in their words more than you believed in yourself….because you don’t know yourself. You didn’t know that anyone can say “God said,” but really “God” hasn’t said a thing. You enjoyed those soothing words because you were lacking self-love. You didn’t know that we have free will to say yes or no to someone else’s outlook of our life! Just because a Pastor prophets from your membership, doesn’t mean they have the right to “prophecy/profess a PSYOP” OVER your life. Did you know that? It is ultimately your CHOICE to follow what someone else has professed to you. If you don’t follow it, their “prophecies” cease to be valid. That is how they are able to continue to say “God said x, y, and z will happen”, because you will continue to believe it. It will continue to come true, because YOU will continue to act it out.
I’m going to end with this….I think the basic answer to knowing “God” or a Creator is to just know yourself. If the Creator is in your spiritual DNA, then it is more logical to start within searching for answers than to spend years looking in a book written by other humans.
Before we can even begin to discuss if a Creator exists or if prayer works, we have to first understand our own biology. How does our mind work? How do we function day to day with the same heart beating over 115,000 times a day? How does our blood filter? How do we know to breath? How am I talking in my mind? How do I see images behind my eyelids when I close my eyes? How do I dream like a movie is playing in my head?
A lot of these answers have zero to do with the Bible or any religion. But if you choose to believe in something outside of yourself, then that will become your reality. If you choose to place yourself in a limited field of experience, that will be your reality. But Christians, please stop repeating statements that you’ve heard and dedicate some time to study more. And stop behaving in ego thinking that you will get a first class seat in the afterlife because you have made a choice to follow a religion.
Many ancient civilizations mastered the art of knowing themselves and nature to comprehend the unknown (supernatural). Maybe we could all start there. Let’s get to know ourselves first before engaging in arguments over whose belief is more real. Let’s use our minds to create some benevolent change in this world. How can we truly help the sick? How about we study how the body works and become educated on natural/free healing methods. How can we truly end world hunger? How about we stop raising millions of dollars for brand new church buildings and put that currency towards feeding the homeless. Let’s build some homeless shelters and soup kitchens!! Then we can use words (prayers) and actions to change our environments.
Thousands of humans INNER/OVERstand the power of connection that we have with one another. We know our individual strengths. So when our neighbors are in need of things that we can fulfill, we are able to respond to them accordingly. The Make-A-Wish Foundation is just one of many organizations that is actually making wishes come true. How many more foundations could we create if we knew that it was our own power and resources assisting the lives of others?
These are just my thoughts, though.