Diary Of A Born Again Christian

"Be still, and know that I am God."

The Christian “middle finger”.

on July 20, 2012

When I was a teenager, the community I lived in was made up of a lot of Christians of many different denominations. I was different than most students in my school. I sported pink hair, loved dressing wildly, and listened to metal. I was also loudly opinionated, and didn’t care to do anything mainstream. I liked smoking pot and cigarettes, and would often sneak vodka in water bottles. As you can imagine, I was quite the charmer. Truth was, I was dealing with emotional problems. This, coupled with my attitude and style made me a target for misguided Christians.

I can’t tell you how many times I was asked if I accepted Jesus into my heart, and told that if I only repented I could receive God’s glory. I may have been troubled, but I respected what they were trying to do. But when I politely declined, I was often hit with a phrase that to this day drives me nuts when people use it in an obviously snarky way.

“I’ll pray for you.” That, my friends, is the Christian middle finger. Okay, I know what some of you are thinking. I myself have used this phrase, but in a genuine way, when someone I love or care for is dealing with life’s iron fist. But, when you say “I’ll pray for you” because you’ve hit a wall with someone, you may as well show them you’re middle finger, because that’s the message the person on the opposite side is receiving. All it does is harden their hearts even more, and it puts a bad taste in their mouth for Christians. Besides, God knows our intentions, and He frowns on behavior like that.

Prayer is meant to lift up one another, it’s not a weapon to use against other people. As someone who has been on the receiving end of it, I can tell you that it is seen as self righteous and rude. None of us are perfect, but we should always make sure we have lines we will vow to never cross.

Self awareness of our actions is a large part of what it means to be Christian. Be quick to listen, and slow to speak. It’s hard at times, especially when being faced with anyone who is challenging who we are. That’s when love comes in as well. It is much easier to do things the right way when we genuinely care for others, whether they are our friends or our enemies.

I wanted to bring up this subject, because it was a very common wall I hit when interacting with Christians before I was a believer. I have been on the receiving end of that phrase, and it is hurtful. It is also obnoxious and off putting. So I’m asking you all, please, don’t use the Christian middle finger! When you say “I’ll pray for you”, be completely genuine.

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