Monday, June 21, 2010

#164-Facebook Prayers

It's been quite a long two weeks, but alas my schoolwork is on a pause and thus now can continue as desired on blogging nonsense...and the good news is, past recommender, Stephany "the Meritorious" Mirelez has provided some darling post suggestions to help aid the process (including this post).

Hopefully, you have facebook. If you don't, stop reading this. It will make no sense.

That said, it seems within the past year or so, people started posting their prayers over facebook. Little do the facebook prayer warriors realize that the first person to do this was a mute.

But whatever the source of the facebook prayer may be, facebook prayers are becoming more and more a reality, and to properly process this cultural phenomenon we need to talk about it.

First and most importantly we must ask, why. Some people appeal to facebook to inform of a prayer request in hopes that others will join in on the petitionary prayer. This is all right and well. But the reality is this kind of facebook status is the exception to the rule....

For most facebook prayers are not directed to one's social network of friends as one would suppose, but rather appeal directly to Jesus/God.

And for what need is this? Where is the Matthew 6:1,5-6 in all of this?

 "Be careful not to do your 'acts of righteousness' before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
 "And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 6But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you"....

But whatever the ethics are against such public demonstrations of petition is secondary to the real reality of it all....

Because the facebook prayer warriors have realized something you and me don't:

God has a facebook...

And basically what happens, as far I can figure is that God has an allotment of how many prayers he answers per dispensation. The more you request something, the more likelihood he moves your prayer up on the priority list to get your prayer answered....

This means many millions of prayers are waiting in queue to be answered. But it's not to say there aren't short cuts to the top of the prayer list. First off, "having the full truth" increases the likelihood. God loves Apostolics more than other Christians. There are other things you can do to get your name increased on the list (e.g. uncut hair, and prayer cloths (to be addressed later on this week).

But the other relatively unknown method of getting your prayer answered expediently is via facebook. Apparently, God gets on facebook just before his bedtime.....and he's looking for 4 things in everyone's facebook status:

-If you used swears/ quoted a lyric to a secular song (so he can record this as a sin)
-If you made an "emergentesque" grace-loving, legalism-hating status (so he can record this as a sin)
-If you made a pro-holiness, apostolic identity promotion status (so he can increase any "prayers in waiting" up on the priority to answer list)
-If you directly prayed to Him directly through facebook..(so can very rapidly increase your priority order on the priority list).

It goes something like this:
God: Hey Gabriel, I just liked one of your statuses...the one about if Patrick Swayze thinks he will get into heaven, he is going to have reenact the movie Ghost again except instead of talking to Whoopi Goldberg and making out with Demi Moore, he has to talk to Demi MOore and make out with whoopi....

Gabriel: LOL

God (still scanning the statuses): WHOA! Jake Cook in Biloxi, Mississippi just prayed to me on facebook. This is his third time in a month. And this time he used the word "Shekhinah" and "Glory" both of which he has no idea what they mean in his current context but they seem always refer to something spiritual. ...Gabriel, what is Billy COok requesting for prayer recently?

Gabriel:  Uh he wants the iPhone 4.

God: Alright, arrange it so he gets a few more dollars than expected on his tax returns.

Gabriel: But he just went to the movie theater last week.

God: What movie did he see?

Gabriel: Marmaduke

God: Love that film. I preemptively forgive him.

Gabriel: What prayer are we going to not answer in it's place...

God: Uh, just don't let one of those kids dying of AIDS in Botswana get the medication he is expected to get this week. Besides, I never see any of those Botwana kids on facebook....

Of course I am being facetious with the hypothetical conversation above. And of course this is not really how God works. I just wonder what really is the utility of facebook prayers....

Perhaps it's a way to witness. And if that's the case I bid you well in such endeavors...

But is this honestly the purpose?

I rather suggest the reasons of facebook prayers are much more simple, but also quite vulgar...

They are a way to signal to our peers "Hey i am spiritual since I have the guts to put something like this down and you do not. And if you are not putting statuses up such as these,  then I can be in a place of judgment over you." But maybe that is an overly simplistic assessment as well..


  1. as a whole we apostolics love attempting to make the abstract, immeasurable things concrete :)

  2. I love the supposed dialogue between God & Gabriel. lol ...

  3. ha - I love this one. Whenever I see people saying prayers on facebook and/or twitter it makes me laugh. I can't figure out why they do it. Maybe you've shed some light on that for me. I'd be interested to see what the people who actually do prayer updates say about it.

  4. I've wondered about this subject as well. Another one I saw recently...a person posting on FB to their dead relative. Kind of creepy, actually.

  5. Just as certain people only go to church when they need something from God, likewise, there are people on Facebook that only reference God when they are in need of something.