It was Christmas. Christmas meant different things to different people, but to the citizens of heaven, like Angel Gordon, Christmas meant more work.
The prayer requests rolled in minute by minute, from different parts of the world. The momentum with which they came at this time of the year was considerably higher than during the rest of the year.
It was a cycle. One they saw as each year rolled by – people who hadn’t as much as coughed in God’s direction in months suddenly wanted full audience with Him as the year drew to a close. It was as though they thought God was a seasonal being, like the winter clothes they pulled out of their boxes when the snow began to come down.
“Listen to this one,” Angel Parmesan called out to him. “God, please I need to drive a car to my village and show those my in-laws that life is treating me well.”
Angel Gordon chuckled. Reading countless and repetitive prayer requests from people who lacked understanding could be a boring task, however they often found ways to amuse themselves. Some of the prayers were pathetic, blistering and generally lazy. One could tell that the prayee had not put much thought into it, it had just been a wham bam slam case – bombarding God with their needs rather than cultivating a culture of fellowship. At Christmas, most of the prayers were self-serving, a chore to be ticked off their list before the year came to a close.
“How about this one? ‘Lord, all my village people who don’t want to see me prosper, let them fall down and die, in Jesus name.’” Angel Zen read.
“I suppose they think ‘in Jesus name’ is a ticket to answered prayers,” Angel Gordon said.
“This one says, Lord, give me children or I die!” it was Angel Parmesan again.
Angel Gordon shook his head. How many of those kinds of prayers went unanswered each year? Countless, he knew.
The door burst open at that moment and a young Angel floated in, a frantic look in his eyes. Angel Gordon recognized him – he was an intern; his name was Angel Cassius.
“Cassius, whatever is the hurry?” Angel Gordon asked.
“I need to speak to God immediately.”
“What are you, Man?” Angel Parmesan chuckled at his own joke. “You do know that only Man has the authority to demand such audience from God.”
“I need to speak to him on behalf of Man. I have had quite a disturbing request.”
“Let’s hear it,” Angel Gordon said.
“This person – she goes by ‘Margaret’ – she is threatening to fall away from the faith if God does not answer her and give her a good man.”
“And? There is no ‘and’! Her request is clear, that God answers her with immediate effect or she is no longer part of his children.”
“Cassius, have a seat.” Angel Gordon gestured at a comfortable looking fluffy chair that faced away from the large monitors that showed prayer requests rolling in.
“But I don’t have…”
“How long has your internship been?” Gordon interrupted.
“I commenced today.”
“Let me tell you something, Cassius, God answers prayers not threats or emotional blackmail.”
“How can we tell the difference?”
“Scripture. We have great respect for the man who prays with scripture because that is the only thing that makes sense to us, to God. Scripture was one of God’s gifts to mankind to grant them easy access to heaven’s throne. But the problem is, Man often does not care to search the scriptures to know God’s heart concerning a matter. They pray with their emotions, not with their evidence. Scripture is the evidence they need to present to God when they get into the place of prayer.”
“What does that mean?”
“It means, God doesn’t answer prayers that have not already been answered in the Word. The Word is the evidence they need to present to God that His will may be done on earth. Say, for example, this woman who wants a husband. God has never answered a prayer based on earthly lusts. He will not give her a husband so that she will not fall because there is no such promise in the Bible. Salvation is not a negotiating stick, it is a gift. A gift that gives access to many other gifts, like husbands. So, if this woman had rather said, I want a husband because two are better than one or because all good and perfect gifts come from above and a good husband is a good and perfect gift, that would have gotten her the response she requires. Not this arm-twisting she is attempting. Do you understand?”
Cassius nodded. “But what if she keeps her word? What if she falls away from the faith?
“Then she was never really in the faith. Think about it, if none of her prayers are answered, will she still serve God?”
“Our duty here, is much more than monitoring the prayers that come up. We look out for Man too. We don’t intend for them to remain babies. Babies cry when they are hungry, expecting that their parents are at their beck and call, rising to every whim and caprice. But those who have grown into sons, when they are hungry, they look for food to eat. When they seek something, they go into the scriptures to receive answers.”
“I understand now.”
“Now, praying with scriptures is one sure way to get answered prayers, but there is another tool that is perfect for bypassing roadblocks and mistakes in the spirit. It is called praying in tongues. Scripture also calls it praying in the spirit. It is by far, the most dynamic and effective tool in prayer.”
“There are no ambiguities, no uncertainties. Man is incapable of understanding and therefore cannot boycott the prayers with his mind. He speaks in the Spirit directly to God, the Father by the help of the Holy Spirit. Fantastic idea, no?”
“So, what do you do with this Margaret woman’s prayer that is emotionally blackmailing God?”
This is a parody work of fiction. I am not in anyway implying that this is what goes on in heaven, but I believe that there are one or two lessons on prayer that can be picked from here. All the names and characters are a work of fiction. Thank you for reading.