The other day my siblings and I were all joking around about prayer meetings. What else do a couple of Christian ex-home schooled young people joke about, am I right? We knew what to typically expect at a meeting like this. Everyone would share requests and requests from their friends that they'd like prayer for. Then either a complex schedule of who prays for what, or a less formal "pop corn prayer" with maybe an "I'll ring, and brother John here will hang up," will be announced and the praying will commence. So, say you are supposed to pray for your church leadership. You may begin somewhat like this, "Father God, thank you that we can come before you in the home of ____. Thank you for every person in this room and the love you have shown toward us. Help us all to be able to reflect that love to the community we live in. I lift up to you the leadership of _____ Church..." Now by this time if you haven't yet heard a "Mhmm!" or an "Amen" or a "Yes Lord," or "Amen Jesus!" at this point you are probably attending the prayer meeting at the church of Ezekiel and I'm talking pre-prophesy.
Anyway, what my siblings and I found hilarious on this particular occasion was thinking about what would happen if that one person muttering while you prayed, disagreed with your prayer. Think of it this way, "Father God, thank you that we can come before you, in the home of ____. (mhmm!) Thank you for every person in this room and the love you have shown (Amen, yes Lord Jesus) toward us. Help us all to be able to reflect that love to the community we live in (yes Lord). I lift up to you the leadership of ______ Church. Particularly Brother Jason (?...er...). Father, I pray that you bless him (noooo) and his family (NO Lord!) and help them raise the funds to embark on their trip to Uganda (nuh uh nope)...." As you can see we don't get out much, and this topic of conversation went on for quite some time amidst much laughter.
But a few Sundays later I found myself in just such a position. Not that I'm one of the people who murmur along with the prayer, but I found myself disagreeing with a small portion of my pastor's prayer. It concerned a person and his family who were seeking a certain calling, (This is a real person hence the vagueness of the post) and I didn't believe the calling was right for him. He's had some interaction with my family and so far to call it "less than satisfactory" would be an understatement. So, I just...stopped praying. I sat up straight and opened my eyes and stopped praying in my heart. Now, I'm unsure if this was correct. I wonder what the protocol is in situations like this. I know I'm not wrong, but should one offer a counter prayer, or is what I did fine?
Really that is the most minor of minor points though. I figure if God has overcome death (our ultimate enemy) He'll know how to handle an unsuitable man holding an important position. Either He will put obstacles in the way of the situation or allow it to come to happen. Either way He knows what He's doing. Obviously for us who can't see the whole picture it is hard to listen to a prayer about it silently, but "we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose."
However, please note how nothing can quite beat the humor that just comes out of real life, and how closely linked are comedy and tragedy.