Jump directly to the Content

Do You Ever Refuse a Prayer Request?

Sometimes people's wishes run counter to God's painful path of transformation.
español
Do You Ever Refuse a Prayer Request?
Image: Chris Liverani / Unsplash

You'd have thought I'd just cussed by the way the mouths around the table soundlessly fell open. And all I'd said was "I don't think I can pray that for you."

The woman who had just asked us to pray was perhaps the most shocked of all.

My home group had just finished eating dinner, and we were sharing prayer requests. With obvious distress, Kris had told of her daughter's plan to move in with a boyfriend that weekend, and asked us to pray that God wouldn't allow it.

I usually try not to take exception to people's prayer requests, but I have a low tolerance for requests I think God clearly will not answer. On this occasion, I didn't keep quiet.

Once they all caught their breath, I explained. "I think all of us here can understand why you want God to stop her from doing that. If anyone here feels that's what God wants, you're free to pray that way. I'm wondering, however, whether asking God to override someone's ability to make moral ...

May/June
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
MINISTRY TO MISSING MEMBERS
MINISTRY TO MISSING MEMBERS
Behind every inactive member lies a story to be heard and a hurt to be healed.
From the Magazine
The Secret Sin of ‘Mommy Juice’
The Secret Sin of ‘Mommy Juice’
Alcoholism among women is rising. Can the church help?
Editor's Pick
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
Understanding God and our world needs more than bare reason and experience.
close