Is it okay to say I'm praying for someone? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, I have been really cautious about this because I want to honor all the different spiritualities on MDC. My personal opinion is that I'm Christian, if I'm sad for someone or hopeful or they need something, I say a quick prayer for them. I figure if I'm right and there is a God and he hears my prayers, so much the better. If I'm wrong, well they are still good and caring vibes sent out.

But I don't want to say "prayers for you" on a message board unless I know it won't anger or offend someone. Especially if I'm trying to be supportive!

What do you think? Especially if you are non-Christian...would you be offended if I said I was praying for you?

Thanks!

Mom to Liz (14) and Dillon (3) and Mitchell FINALLY born 7/11/10!
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#2 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:22 PM
 
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I am an atheist and pretty touchy about religion, as it happens, but "I'll pray for you" has never bothered me.

The exception is when the person means they are praying for me to repent or find jesus or whatever. That is a little offensive. But if they mean they are praying for me because of illness or other difficult circumstances, hey, go for it. I take it as, "I'll be thinking of you."
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#3 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:24 PM
 
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I'm not religious at all, but I do understand and appreciate the thought behind someone saying that. Most of the time it wouldn't bother me. The only time it would would be if the person was going on and on about it, you know?
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#4 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:24 PM
 
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I am Christian, but have a lot of non-Christian friends who would not be offended by that. Lots of religions "pray" in some way.
If someone else offered to support me through their religious practices I would feel touched and cared for. Well, with a few exceptions

So if someone told me they lit a candle for me, burned incense for me, prayed for me, wished on a star for me, prayed the rosary for me, talked to the wind for me??? whatever??? I would accept it as a nice gesture and not be offended.


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#5 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:24 PM
 
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I'm not religious and I appreciate when people say they will pray for me. Sometimes prayer isn't about who you pray to, it's about the thoughts, effort and support.

Full Time Student & Mommy to 3 princesses! 9/03, 2/07 & 2/07

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#6 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:25 PM
 
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I'm an atheist and it usually depends on the context that the "I'll pray for you" on whether or not I'll be miffed.
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#7 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:26 PM
 
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I am an atheist and it doesn't bother me. I think it's like saying "you're in my thoughts." It's meant in the spirit of kindness, so I try to take it that way.
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#8 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:27 PM
 
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i am a christian, so it doesnt bother me, and i don'tthink it bothers too many people, unless like the pp said it is said about something in the wrong context

Kristin- Wife to J, Mommy to B (11), M-S (8), and little J (4) and J&J (7 months)
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#9 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 12:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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That's exactly what it would be--a brief prayer for support or caring. I don't think I necessarily have the direct hotline to the great beyond (don't I wish ), so I wouldn't ever pray for anyone to change their personal beliefs. I just want to make sure whoever I said it to wouldn't feel disrespected.

If I do put it in one of my messages, I'll just make sure I clarify my meaning.

Thanks again!

Mom to Liz (14) and Dillon (3) and Mitchell FINALLY born 7/11/10!
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#10 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 01:03 PM
 
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I don't like the idea of people praying for me because it's *usually* those individuals trying to impose their own personal will upon me and my situation.

My father prays that I will become a christian.
My MIL prays that DH and I will come "back into the family fold".

Icky.

I'm not going to do either of those things so the idea that they are praying makes me feel violated. From my angle, their prayers look more like black magic (trying to manipulate the universe for their own benefit).
Of course they see it as love so there isn't much that I can do except understand they are who they are and move on.

That said, I think prayer can be done in a true loving and respectful manner.

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#11 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 01:28 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday
I am an atheist and pretty touchy about religion, as it happens, but "I'll pray for you" has never bothered me.

The exception is when the person means they are praying for me to repent or find jesus or whatever. That is a little offensive. But if they mean they are praying for me because of illness or other difficult circumstances, hey, go for it. I take it as, "I'll be thinking of you."
This is exactly how I feel. I don't pray and am in fact atheist, but I will sometimes tell people who are religious that I will pray for them meaning that I will think of them. It's pretty rare that I do that though and it's usually got a very specific context.

I generally take "I'll pray for you" to mean "I'll be thinking of you."

anna kiss partner to jon radical mama to aleks (8/02) and bastian (5/05)
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#12 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 01:47 PM
 
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I'm not sure what I am... somewhere UU and Pagan...

I also get an "icky" feeling if someone tells me they're praying for me to find God, be saved, accept Jesus, etc. That's not support, that's recruitment.

If someone is saying "I'll pray for you" in response to my needing support about something, that's all good. I don't pray to a specific, singular, conscious entity, but time that people spend simply being mindful, being caring, sending positive "vibes", connecting spiritually to bring about change, etc. can only be postive IMO. If their word for that is "prayer", so be it.
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#13 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 01:59 PM
 
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I am a christian so it wouldn't bother me. If another person of a different faith wanted to pray for me, send good vibes (cause thats what praying is) or anything else positive I'd feel loved and all warm inside
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#14 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:02 PM
 
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I am not Christian, and am usually not offended. Sometimes, I'll ask them to think positive thoughts for me instead. So that the positive vibes go to me...not upwards.

Danielle, fabric artist, mama to Eleanor 5/05 and Charlotte James 09-26-09
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#15 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artist Mama
I don't like the idea of people praying for me because it's *usually* those individuals trying to impose their own personal will upon me and my situation.

My father prays that I will become a christian.
My MIL prays that DH and I will come "back into the family fold".
That's praying for their own selfish wants, not praying for you.

(Hmmm, maybe the various religious mamas on the forum could pray for your family to develop some tolerance. )
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#16 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:10 PM
 
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"I'm not sure what I am... somewhere UU and Pagan...

I also get an "icky" feeling if someone tells me they're praying for me to find God, be saved, accept Jesus, etc. That's not support, that's recruitment.

If someone is saying "I'll pray for you" in response to my needing support about something, that's all good."

that



the offense works backwards too so I think its nice that you asked It shows you care

( I once on another messageboard was told I had better not do any more sending of good vibes to the mamas family cause I would make them go to hell...)
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#17 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:26 PM
 
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I'm an Atheist. It doesn't bother me as long as you don't tell me you are going to pray for my soul (since I'm going to hell and all). But if it's truly is in a supportive way I take prayers the same as good vibes or thoughts.

OUR DAUGHTERS ARE PROTECTED SHOULDN'T OUR SONS BE TOO! :
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#18 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:30 PM
 
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Support doesn't bother me at all.

Honestly, I have the opposite problem. When someone is having a hard time and I *know* they would appreciate prayers and I am not a pray-er, I feel inadquate just saying "I'll keep you in my thoughts" or the like.

 

 

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#19 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:40 PM
 
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I don't mind at all if someone says that they are praying for me. I am very spiritual, but don't follow any particular religion. I will say that I am praying for somebody once in a while... but only because some people think it's flakey or weird when I say that I am sending them" light"!More often though I say that " I am thinking of you".
My grandma called last month when I was at the hospital for three days in a row with both boys, and just being told that we were needing to get some frightening tests. She is not religious... or religion is NEVER spoken about in our family. She told me she was going to pray for us. She faltered when she said it.... like she wasn't sure if it was ok to say... and somthing she would never say. I knew exactly what she ment. It brought me to tears and was one of the nicest things she had ever said to me.

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#20 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday
The exception is when the person means they are praying for me to repent or find jesus or whatever. That is a little offensive. But if they mean they are praying for me because of illness or other difficult circumstances, hey, go for it. I take it as, "I'll be thinking of you."
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#21 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 02:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan
That's praying for their own selfish wants, not praying for you.

(Hmmm, maybe the various religious mamas on the forum could pray for your family to develop some tolerance. )

Well, I believe in karma and know that in this lifetime (or another) life experience will teach them better.
I don't think anything good can come out of getting into someone else's personal space (unless specifically invited into said space).

DS 6 DD 8
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#22 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 03:00 PM
 
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I think it is incredibly nice and sensitive of you to ask the question here in the first place!

I am a secular humanist (atheist) and really don't prefer people who KNOW I am to tell me they are praying for me. It seems like a backhanded compliment if you kwim. But if someone on a message board who DIDN'T know my religion said a simple "I'm praying for you", that wouldn't offend me. It wouldn't make me feel any better but it wouldn't offend.

Of course, this is all assuming that it is praying for illness to be cured, or the like. Praying (like my MIL does) that I will get my kids baptized or will find religion is very offensive to me. If she wants to do that, have at it but don't tell me. She also prays we'll not hit traffic on our way home, or for me to do well on my college finals (years ago) - to me, that is offensive too. My thought on it is that if there IS a god, praying for light traffic is like prayer spam. Do you really want to fill up god's in box with crap like that?? When she would tell me she was praying for stuff like that, I always told her to pray for a cure for cancer, food for the hungry, etc. Don't waste your time on the college final! I'll do well if I studied enough...
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#23 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 03:43 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday
I am an atheist and pretty touchy about religion, as it happens, but "I'll pray for you" has never bothered me.

The exception is when the person means they are praying for me to repent or find jesus or whatever. That is a little offensive. But if they mean they are praying for me because of illness or other difficult circumstances, hey, go for it. I take it as, "I'll be thinking of you."
: except I'm not atheist, but I'm not religious. Probably more of an agnostic I guess.
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#24 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 03:57 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday
I am an atheist and pretty touchy about religion, as it happens, but "I'll pray for you" has never bothered me.

The exception is when the person means they are praying for me to repent or find jesus or whatever. That is a little offensive. But if they mean they are praying for me because of illness or other difficult circumstances, hey, go for it. I take it as, "I'll be thinking of you."
: Except I'm Jewish
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#25 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 03:58 PM
 
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I don't care for it. I'd rather hear," I'll be thinking of you". Keep your personal religious beliefs out of my face, thanks.
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#26 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 03:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirsten
... She also prays we'll not hit traffic on our way home, or for me to do well on my college finals (years ago) - to me, that is offensive too. My thought on it is that if there IS a god, praying for light traffic is like prayer spam. Do you really want to fill up god's in box with crap like that?? When she would tell me she was praying for stuff like that, I always told her to pray for a cure for cancer, food for the hungry, etc. Don't waste your time on the college final! I'll do well if I studied enough...
That's a great way to put it...'prayer spam!! '
Reminds me of something..when I was in elementary school I went to St. Vincent's Catholic school. At a volleyball tournament, our girls team had a prayer before the match, where we prayed to be able to beat St. Anne's. (It was at a tournament of all the Catholic schools in the city). I asked the coach if we really should be praying to God to ask St. Vincent's team to beat St. Anne's.
I'm glad the OP started this thread! I often find myself praying when I read something here and want to support the person who posted it. I can keep that to myself, but then I don't really know how to answer the posts. I feel bad reading through a post, praying for the person or situation in question, and not leaving a comment, because I think it could be hard on the poster to come here for support and not see many responses. At the same time, I feel a little weird posting 'you're in my thoughts', or 'I'll be thinking of you'.

Vegan, mom to : Joe and Josh ::
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#27 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 04:51 PM
 
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I'm atheist and the only time it really offends me is when a christian says "I'll pray you find god" or something like that. It's like they're praying to convert me KWIM? I can think of so many more worthwhile things to pray for if you're going to bother with prayer at all, how about world hunger? Or abused children? Or the war in Iraq? Also it implies that there's something wrong with me or I must be unhappy in my non-belief and need help to find the "right" way, so that's offensive.

But the other day I was telling my aunt about how dh lost his job and she said she had been praying for us every morning, I wasn't offended by that. I don't think it will work but it wasn't a condescending thing or judgement about my non-belief. I just sort of took it as her way of saying she sympathizes.
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#28 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 05:25 PM
 
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I like to tell mamas I am praying for them especially when I don't have an answer to their sad situation....I think it can be taken as "I have you in my thoughts" kind of thing.

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#29 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 06:02 PM
 
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it doesn't offend me, as long as it isn't condecending.
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#30 of 82 Old 12-13-2005, 06:02 PM
 
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Doesn't offend me either. I think that's part of being in a diverse group like this, and I embrace it. When you need support here you've got prayers going to the christian/jewish/muslim go, the pagan gods and goddess, the wind, the trees, the sky, as well as warm thoughts and lighted candles and positive energy. Its a great thing really.
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