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September 8th, 2011
12:17 PM ET

Church invites jobless to place resumes on altar

(CNN) - A Catholic church outside Buffalo, New York is taking prayers for the jobless to a new level, inviting unemployed parishioners to place their resumes on the alter

"It's tough times," said Father Bill Quinlivan, who came up with the idea to collect resumes and pray for them at a recent prayer service, told CNN Buffalo affiliate WGRZ. "So we go to God with that."

Quinlivan is a priest at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Tonawanda, New York.

"It's an important lesson for us to realize we take our faith out into the marketplace and into the workplace," Quinlivan told WGRZ. "What sometimes some of us do is we tell God what we want instead of asking what he wants."

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church • Economy • New York

soundoff (363 Responses)
  1. RightTurnClyde

    We do not ask God for a job. But we do ask Him for courage, wisdom, patience, new beginning, focus. Jobs are disappearing (unions and lawyers made them extinct .. together with over regulation and taxation). But the plucky can offer their services and find their way.

    September 8, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
    • USmellLikePee

      I call bullsch!t. Religious people pray for what they want all the time. All this spin on prayer is nauseating. Quit sugar coating it and just admit that you pray for what you want.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • A Theist

      @USmell Just because there are people who misuse faith or God does not mean they represent what the Bible teaches. RightTurn is not sugar-coating anything. He's "de-coating" the junk "Christians" have put on it.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      Usmall is a good example of a human life form that is culturally and morally bankrupt. He selected a handle that demeans him and uses language that demeans him and obviously failed to develop his own person because (at the very least) he has low self esteem and that makes him self demeaning. He may well be using a library computer(and be homeless).

      September 8, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Newyorker

      Total BS. There are plenty of jobs in America, and corporations are doing extremely well (The Dow is consistently at or above 11,000). However, US corporations have great difficulty filling jobs in the technology and science industries in the US. The problem is that many unemployed people in America lack the skills and training to do any of these high-paid, skilled jobs. Their low-skill jobs were already shipped out to China and India. Tax cuts will do nothing to bring those jobs back. It will just fatten their wallets. And getting rid of regulation will allow companies to destroy the environment in order to create a couple of low-wage jobs. So, keep dreaming, or go to College if you want to learn.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • Jesus

      How about placing copies of birth certificates of molested toddlers on the altar? Probably not doable as it would bury the altar in paper.

      September 8, 2011 at 9:13 pm |
    • Evan

      Why not ask God to provide? He cares about what we care about, plain and simple.

      September 10, 2011 at 1:44 am |
  2. Hasa Diga Eebowai

    Just as with the huge $2million study of the effectiveness on prayer in medicine by the Templeton Foundation, this will most likely have the same result. If anything giving up and hoping on miracles will if anything make it worse.

    September 8, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
    • A Theist

      It depends on what they mean by "prayer" 😉

      September 8, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      You have the wrong idea about prayer and that is not surprising. Many do.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      You mentioned this $2 million study more than once. It must have impressed you .. just he $2 million seems to have your attention. But it means nothing to you since you do not believe it, don't do it and are completely self sustaining on your own two feet - in need of no other human being to make your way regardless of the challenges. Hoo-ah, hoo-ah Kabar in your teeth.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      The money is only impressive because it allowed such an in detailed study, one that the faithful swore would work.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      And I need, and cherish the many people that have made me what I am today, no fairies needed. In fact, as a humanist I cherish mankind above all.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      What are your today? Hey is this Warren Buffet incognito? What are you today?

      September 8, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • LeftTurnLouie

      Looks like RightTurnClyde has had a stroke or something that shows severe brain damage. What strange posts.

      September 9, 2011 at 12:20 am |
  3. Jiminy Cricket

    Did y'all forget - It is written:

    When you wish upon a star
    Makes no difference who you are
    Anything your heart desires
    Will come to you

    If your heart is in your dream
    No request is too extreme
    When you wish upon a star
    Your dreams come true.

    September 8, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
    • Jesus

      Walt Disney is God??? I thought Elvis was God.

      September 8, 2011 at 9:14 pm |
  4. J.W

    I bet all of those people will get jobs soon. I hope they do a follow up article.

    September 8, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • Laughing

      I'd be more interested in this follow-up article to see who actually did something after submitting their resumes on an alter or just sat around and waited for the phone calls to start coming in with job offers.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
    • GodPot

      JOBS – Jocular Obtuse Belligerant Syndrome – Where they sit back and stupidly smile at their decision to not decide.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Just as with the huge $2million study of the effectiveness on prayer by the Templeton Foundation, this will most likely have the same result. If anything giving up and hoping on miracles will if anything make it worse.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
  5. Laughing

    Does this mean they can use god as a reference now?

    September 8, 2011 at 1:22 pm |
    • William Demuth

      I respect Jesus being referenced in a resume.

      I genuflect as I toss it in the trash!

      September 8, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
    • GodPot

      If they are applying to Him they may want to use some other Gods as their reference like:

      "Work's well with others, many hands make light work" – Vishnu

      "Lightning quick, like a son to me" – Zeus

      "Very bright, works hard every day" – Ra

      September 8, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
    • Laughing

      @GodPot

      I bow down to your hilarious jokes

      When they tried to get in touch with Buddha, they couldn't find him anywhere but Odin was very generous when he said I had "A warrior's work ethic"

      September 8, 2011 at 2:05 pm |
    • GodPot

      Well if you want to bow down to me I'll be a reference as well 🙂

      "Has a well rounded grasp of language, sharpened wit, voted least likely to be stoned..." GodPot

      September 8, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
    • William Demuth

      In High School I was named "Most Likely to Take Hostages"

      Does that get me an honorable mention?

      September 8, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
    • Jesus

      If you tell the interviewer that God is a reference, you can almost guarantee not getting hired.

      September 8, 2011 at 9:16 pm |
  6. William Demuth

    This is really good news.

    I need to lay a few off and I wanted to be fair, so now that Jesus is pitching in to get them work, I am only going to lay off Christians!

    I shall leter Peter and Paul go, and Haji and Bagwan can have their jobs!

    Biblical solution don't you think?

    September 8, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
    • Done Deal

      Haji and Bagwan work for much less money, so the corporations already sent Peter and Paul's jobs overseas to them anyway. God's will be done.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      Oh that is a good joke. You spend too much time on this BLOG to be running a company with employees. You are probably unemployed yourself. You have a lot of time on your hands (no action items to complete).

      September 8, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
    • Jesus

      I run a small business. Christians are welcome so long as they keep their insane 1st century beliefs to themselves.

      September 9, 2011 at 12:03 am |
  7. William Demuth

    The Jobless invite the Church to pay its taxes, so they can have a job.

    September 8, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
  8. Joe

    Its suppose to be altar I suppose–>CNN) – A Catholic church outside Buffalo, New York is taking prayers for the jobless to a new level, inviting unemployed parishioners to place their resumes on the alter

    September 8, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
  9. A Theist

    I've seen myriads of posts on this site concerning the nature of prayer and how studies have shown that it "doesn't work." Allow me to rephrase the statement: "Wish granting does not work." If you observe the way Christ always prayed, He asked God to have His hand in the situation, whatever that meant. Note that Jesus never asked for blessings on Himself in the manner that Americans ask for blessings.

    If these men are coming to pray, "God give me a job," then I say, good luck folks, but you might as well join the wishful thinking bandwagon. However, if they come to the altar and say, "Lord have your way in this, whatever that means for me," then I applaud their efforts. Stop trying to fit God into the "American Dream" box. It doesn't work like that.

    September 8, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      So prayer only works when you don't know the outcome and accept whatever the outcome is.

      Wow.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
    • Stevie7

      Here's a few things that jesus actually said about prayer:
      "Ask and it will be given to you"
      "I will do whatever you ask in my name"

      Praying to god, allah, zeus, or the flying spaghetti monster all has the same effect.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
    • A Theist

      Prayer is not about a cause-effect interaction. That would, in a sense, be "testing God." Prayer is about inviting God into a situation and trusting that He is by your side. Cause and effect can occur, but if that's why you're going into the prayer or how you are praying, all I can say is, "good luck!"

      And many times people of the Bible knew the outcome long before, like Jesus before His crucifixion. He knew He would be crucified, but invited God into the situation to ensure that all was in His will. It's not about blind faith, it's about a dependence on God.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:10 pm |
    • Al

      it’s about a dependence on God.

      I depend on myself. Seems to be a little more effective.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
    • William Demuth

      A Theist

      Cut the double speak.

      Either you can petti*ion the Lord with prayer or you can't.

      Your inconsistenct makes you look like a child caught stealing a cookie who makes up the nonesense as he goes along

      September 8, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
    • A Theist

      I hate to bring out the old cliche, but prayer is one of those things you can't fully understand until you've tried it–and sincerely at that. I've noticed a few Chinese proverbs being thrown around today, and I think this one applies to the current case: "I hear and I forget; I see and I remember; I do and I understand."

      @Stevie actually that's a rather myopic look at the verses. You're doing exactly what cherry-picking Christians do.
      This is the whole verse: "7“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened." In context Christ was arguably (and likely) referring to the nature of finding God. Meaning, if you honestly and sincerely pray, "God please show me who you are, or that you exist," then God will answer it–not to say that you should test Him, like "show me a miracle," but more like, provide for me an open heart and eyes to see that you are real.

      As for the other one, here is the full context: "12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it."
      He says He will do whatever you ask that will glorify the Father, meaning anything that is in the will of God. There is a lot more theology behind it, but taken in context it is clear Jesus was not condoning wish granting.

      If you can provide textual evidence that would somehow discredit the rather relevant textual evidence I provided, I would be more than happy to continue the debate or answer questions. Otherwise, I unfortunately have to say, like a personal experience, prayer is just one ot those things that you cannot fully understand until you've been truly immersed in it.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:29 pm |
    • GodPot

      "He knew He would be crucified, but invited God into the situation to ensure that all was in His will. It's not about blind faith, it's about a dependence on God."

      "Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine." Luke 22:42

      Quite the invite. I'm sure the jobless feel the same way. If God wants them to live in a trailer park in tornado alley and smoke cig's as their retirement plan aka "early retirement" and save just enough money after buying their alcoholic energy drinks at the gas station to throw a few coins in the plate on Sunday thinking that will get them into the special cloudy gated community after they puff their last puff, then so be it.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Will Ok, to clarify from what you perceive as "double speak." God will answer any prayer where you "peti*tion" Him to be a part of your life or make Himself known to you–noting that you are not testing God, but honestly seeking Him. God is not in the business of vending-machines. Did I simplify it enough for you?

      September 8, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
    • William Demuth

      A Theist

      Dude you sound like a priest trying to talk the pants off an Altar boy.

      I have heard other parasites use the same line to get ghetto kids hooked on heroin!

      September 8, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
    • A Theist

      @GodPot Quite the invite. I'm sure the jobless feel the same way. If God wants them to live in a trailer park in tornado alley and smoke cig's as their retirement plan aka "early retirement" and save just enough money after buying their alcoholic energy drinks at the gas station to throw a few coins in the plate on Sunday thinking that will get them into the special cloudy gated community after they puff their last puff, then so be it.

      Ah, but you missed a few imortant points on the analogy you drew. 1) Jesus was still active in what He believed God's will was. He didn't just ask God to play a part and then sit back and wait, He got up and joined his disciples and actively accepted what He knew His outcome would be. 2) I would argue that the behaviors you listed of the "jobless" hardly seem like that of God's will. In what way are they following God by sitting around in trailer parks and "smiking cig's"? 3) The jobless don't know the same way Christ did about their futures. To as_sume you will be jobless forever and then resolve to what your description fits without trying is to give up and be lazy.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:41 pm |
    • William Demuth

      A Theist

      You avoid the question.

      Will God change the future based on the request of a human being?

      It's really quite a simple question, one that only requires a simple yes or no.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:42 pm |
    • Laughing

      @A Theist

      I'm confused, so what exactly is an answered prayer? I mean obviously most atheists, myself included, feel an answered prayer would literally be a sign of god's power, that there was no other way to explain an event or thing other than attributing it to god. But you say that you have to get up and be active to fulfill this prayer and god will give you an opportunity, how does that work exactly? How does that make sense to attribute something you did by grabbing an opportunity to god when you could explain everything without a god present?

      Yes yes, i know, you have to immerse yourself in it to understand it supposedly, but you do understand how ridiculous it is to say that you prayed for a job, then went out and applied to a 100 places, of those places 10 granted interviews and 2 offered jobs. Where does god come into that equation? He can't exactly influence someones hiring decision because that violats the free will thing, and its not like he led a person to a specific job. What exactly counts as a successful prayer?

      September 8, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • Stevie7

      Been there, done that, got the T-shirt. Eventually I just got sick of the kool-aid. What you're essentially saying is that prayer doesn't actually do anything, and prayer is only relevant to people that have convinced themselves that prayer will be relevant. I hear the same lines from psychics and mediums.

      I get the theological argument that prayer isn't about asking for wishes – this is a necessary argument when faced with the fact that prayer doesn't actually do anything – at least nothing that couldn't be accomplished through, say, meditation. But there's plenty of biblical basis, and plenty of theological arguments, to argue that god should hear and at least consider requests. The rcc probably doesn't pray for specific things just because it seems like a fun thing to do.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Will I guess I didn't simplify it enough for you, or maybe you just have an odd fixation on priests and pedophiles.
      Allow me to provide another verse concerning those "priests" : "6But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea." Matthew 18:6.

      Priests and men like Warren Jeffs can throw around all sorts of loony crack about God's will, but they made such conclusions without any source of logic, reason, true textual support, or evidence. Inviting God's will into your life has nothing to do with the scenario that you depict, but it's truly sickening that people do such things, and the others like you believe that that's what it's really like or even remotely about.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Laughing, no it's a valid question. This is going to sound a little theological in nature, but as I said before, it's a theological debate since it concerns communiticating with God. So I'll attempt my best explanation in a manner that is understandable.

      An answered prayer is simply when God is asked to fulfill His will in a situation, and then carries it out. Now in the case of Christ, the crucifixion is, in a sense, an answered prayer. We can look at more extreme examples like that of Elisha who asked that God open the eyes of his servant so that he could see that God had intended to protect Elisha with angels. Part of the reason "answered prayers" appear more mundane today–at least I postulate–is because we only ask for God to partake in mundane activities. Activities that can be explained as chance. Honestly, I have a hard time accepting that most of the American lifestyle really fits in with the definition of an active follower of Christ in the first place. How many American Christians do you know that are consistently helping the poor, defending the oppressed, etc.? Yet that is exactly what the Bible asks Christians to do–and they don't have to travel to Africa to meet needs such as these. It stands to reason, then, that if most of your peers and most fellow civilians are not living as much in God's will as possible, then few prayers concerning their life and God's will coincide. Does that sort of make sense?

      @Stevie and Laughing: As I said before, it's rather difficult to explain to someone who has not witnessed it in action, just as explaining the experience of watching a movie to someone who's never been in a movie theater before could only give a va.gue picture of what the event is really like and how it works. (Stevie read my comment above to Laughing as well if you consider my opinion worth reading, if not, enjoy your narrow-mindedness.)

      September 8, 2011 at 2:05 pm |
    • GodPot

      "To as_sume you will be jobless forever and then resolve to what your description fits without trying is to give up and be lazy."

      So you are making the point that faith (or prayer) without works is dead. So if you do the work for the desired outcome, why pray? Or are works without faith also dead as so many Christians seem to think about charitable atheists? My point is that many so called Christians live that way, putting all their trust in a human to tell them everything is ok, they are forgiven and all they need to do is get back there next Sunday to do it all over again to stay on that path to salvation. It's sick, it's a racket, and I feel sorry for those who believe certain humans have any extra special connection to whatever sparked the creation of the universe over 14 billion years ago. You are being lied to, tricked, fooled, bamboozled, duped, conned, cheated, hoodwinked, swindled, misled and all around victimized by people who do not care about you, they only care about promoting their version of reallity where they are always the winners and the saved, the chosen people, the elite, hand picked by the creator of the universe and can do no wrong (at least no wrong they can't make go away with a suitcase of your cash).

      September 8, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
    • J.W

      It seems to me that God's will is to make me happy and to make sure nothing bad ever happens to me.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
    • Laughing

      You are right that this clearly a theological debate in nature, so to try and prove if prayer has any identifiable effect detracts from the topic at hand.

      For your theological evidence, I guess that makes sense in terms of when god answered a prayer, but the bible is full of answered prayers, I mean he did deliver the israelites from egypt, he destroyed the walls of Jerhico, etc.., I guess I want to bring this into more modern times though. I think we can both agree that the bible tends to be a little bias when it comes to pointing out gods good works. What exactly is a mundane answer to a prayer? Sure it's hard to say that god should answer the prayers of the average american who isn't devoting his or her life daily to god, but more often than not, its an American who will be the first to try and prove exactly how god answered his or her prayer, do you think those people who think they had their prayers answered actually did or they're grasping?

      September 8, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
    • J.W

      Churches arent just places where people go on Sunday mornings. They have youth activities, activities for adults and seniors, Bible studies, service projects, etc. I do not feel like I am being tricked into doing anything.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
    • Laughing

      JW

      you just opened a can of worms though. What happens when something bad DOES happen then? Did god fail? did you fail? What exactly did you do to earn something bad to happen to you when it does. What happenes when you are not happy? Again, is that gods failure, what did you do to make god want you to be unhappy?

      September 8, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
    • J.W

      Well Laughing I am not a perfect person. Sometimes I do bad things and that will cause bad things to happen or it will make me feel guilty. I feel that those are my failures. If something bad happens God is trying to keep me on the right path.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
    • J.W

      I mean I do not do anything really bad, but sometimes I might flip someone off in traffic or something like that. That is the worst thing I would ever do.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
    • A Theist

      @GodPot. No, please go back and read what I said. This "work" that you have referenced is likely not a work relevant to God's will, but simply a factor in somebody's life. The purpose of prayer is to ask God to continue to work you with His will. So why pray? Because, as a Christian you would desire a job that is within God's will so that you can continue to share in communion with Him. If you don't pray, you can still get a job, but a true Christian doesn't just want any old job, they want the job that God desires for them.

      My point is that many so called Christians live that way, putting all their trust in a human to tell them everything is ok, they are forgiven and all they need to do is get back there next Sunday to do it all over again to stay on that path to salvation. It's sick, it's a racket

      Stop there, and everything the Bible says will agree with you; I will as well.

      You are being lied to, tricked, fooled, bamboozled, duped, conned, cheated, hoodwinked, swindled, misled and all around victimized by people who do not care about you, they only care about promoting their version of reallity where they are always the winners and the saved, the chosen people, the elite, hand picked by the creator of the universe and can do no wrong (at least no wrong they can't make go away with a suitcase of your cash).

      Who is lying to me? A preacher? Sorry, but I don't let anybody else tell me what to believe or why to believe it. No priest, pope, professor, or anyone else defines what I believe in. I believe by evaluating texts, pondering by myself, and asking people from all sorts of backgrounds how they view life. I happen to agree with some pastors on many things, but that doesn't mean it's because they led me there. I formulated my beliefs on my own, and take with a grain of salt those who I happen to agree with.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
    • Laughing

      @JW

      But heres the thing, you say you do evil things; like what? Does the bad things that happen to you equal the bad thing you dished out? how fast does the bad thing happen after you do the bad thing? Is guilt the punishment and aren't you supposed to feel guilt anyways because jesus's ultimate sacrifice?

      Also, I'm sure god of all things knows that no one is perfect, no matter how perfect they may seem, so does that mean he'll give you some leniency? Isn't it unfair to judge someone to see if they can be a perfect person if we all know there's no such thing (except (some if not all) believers will agree jesus was perfect)

      September 8, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Laughing
      Correct, there are many more "miraculous" prayers answered in the Bible than we see nowadays. One thing to consider is the scale by which God's will is carried out. For example, delivering an entire chosen nation from a massive tyrannical Pharaoh requires a little more blatant "tweaking" by God's hand than most simple tasks today. If for some reason God decided that America was pertinant to His will (I personally don't believe America is some sort of "chosen land"), and, as a nation or as firm leaders of the nation, they prayed to God to have His will in the land, then we could expect to see much grander things than what most people mention today.

      I'm going to disown a whole bunch of believers by saying this, but many times I think people are grasping at good fortune as an "answered prayer." That's not to say God didn't have His hand in a blessing or whatever, but my impression is that a lot of things Americans care about (please save my dog's life, please make me feel better, etc.) don't really matter to God as much as they would think.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
    • A Theist

      @J.W I'm going to have to respectfully disagree with that outlook. I believe God would like to see us happy, but that is not His highest priority in our lives. He will allow for bad things to happen, even "without cause". All the same, I believe He desires that we feel at peace of mind (on a deeper level than emotion) and provides that at all times.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
    • Laughing

      @ A Theist

      Correct me if I'm wrong here, but if you believe in god, then doesn't that really count out any possibility of "luck"? I mean, if something good happens that you prayed for, what's the diffrence between good luck and an answer? Take, for intance, the "save my dogs life" example. You pray for it, your dog survives the surgery, then isn't that an "answered prayer". I mean, my opinion is of course that it isn't because the dog already had a good chance of surviving and it was good work by the vet, but in your view, if god didn't have a hand in it, then who did?

      As for your America example. So America isn't the chosen land (contrary to probably the vast majority of Americans and a sh.itload of people in the world) what exactly is? I mean, gods shown a vested interest before and like you said, if a specific country is pertinent to his will then he'll start tweaking, so what in your opinion IS the chosen land, people, etc...?

      September 8, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
    • J.W

      Well I do not do anything too evil. I do things I probably shouldn't sometimes. Well I usually never get sick. Then one night I went to a bad place, and I was sick for the next several days. Little things like that. But yeah I think God knows I am generally a good person. He may get angry if I treat other people bad though. That is probably more where the guilt comes in, how what I did affected someone else.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
    • Laughing

      So do you get physically ill everytime you do something bad? Or was it just the once? Does god have a corresponding punishment for whatever bad deed you happen to do? How quickly did you get sick after you did the bad thing? Immediately? the next day? 2 days later?

      When you flip someone off in traffic do you get a cramp in your middle finger?

      Honestly, I'm just trying to figure it out because it does sound like you're tying two events together as a way to assuage guilt over something by assigning specific cosmic punishment you later received for a bad deed.

      What happens when something REALLY bad happens? I'm not talking sick for a couple days I'm talking somthing that will alter the course of your entire life in a negative way (if it hasn't already) and yet you didn't do anything to "deserve it" necessarily, how can you explain that?

      September 8, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Laughing More good questions! Keep 'em coming! You are right again, I sort of alluded to this in my last post, but it is true that God has His hand in everything–at least according to my beliefs. Now a casual observer may say, "I prayed for my dog to live, and he did! God answered my prayer!" Doing this however, is looking through the lens of one's own position and then presuming God worked through it for that purpose–it's actually a mistake of pride, interestingly enough! I would argue that the prayer was not answered, but that coincidentally you wanted your dog to live and God saw a purpose in His will for this dog to live–beyond or in spite of the fact that the person wanted it to live. I would say God did not answer that prayer any more than if He let the dog die. Why? Because the prayer was about one's personal desires and, to the extent of this context, entirely irrelevant to the will of God. (My personal belief, supported biblically, is that God's ultimate will is that all would know, love, and seek Him–not in some obedient slavery thing or by way of crusading the world, but simply because all would desire to seek Him. That's why I don't support televangelists or street-corner bull-horn men or CrystalRiver/Carla/anything else she calls herself).

      Haha well it's really a matter of what you believe a "chosen people" means. I believe God has a purpose and plan for every nation, including America. That being said, we aren't some special, protected land. On one hand I would say Israel is the chosen land–biblically speaking and what not. More precisely I believe that Jews are still His chosen people–meaning He still protects them and has plans for them. Considering the hardships they've survived, their surprising prosperity, and the resilience Israel has had (I know that Israel is not just a Jewish nation, but included in the promise of protecting the Jews, God included that Israel is their promise land), not to mention the attention it is given, considering it is smaller than the state of California, tells me that God considers it to be His chosen land. That's mostly just my personal beliefs, but they stem from Biblical support and observation.

      September 8, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
    • J.W

      Well that instance I got sick that next morning. In the case of the time I flipped someone off in traffic a rock hit my windshield about 3 seconds later. I do not know what necessarily to think if I had something really bad happen. You probably know how righteous I am, so I do not have a lot to be punished for. I guess I would probably try to figure out why. I may have to look at it and see if it was my fault and if there was anything I could do about it.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
    • Pat

      "Prayer is not about a cause-effect interaction. That would, in a sense, be "testing God." Prayer is about inviting God into a situation and trusting that He is by your side. Cause and effect can occur, but if that's why you're going into the prayer or how you are praying, all I can say is, "good luck!""

      I don't believe in a god but I have done a vision board. I was amazed that in 5 years everything on that vision board came true in one way or another. Yes, I even put an obscene amount of money and that too came true. It's the power of positive thinking and keeping your eye on your personal goals. You don't need a god for that. It's when you allow negative feelings, doubt in yourself that causes your life to go in the crapper. The problem with religion is people loose themselves in it and think some deity in the sky is going to fix their problems, nope isn’t going to happen like that. Yes, I am the rags to riches story, including being homeless for a year so don't think I haven't made my mistakes but I only blamed myself for the turns my life took, not a god, not a devil. If you can't take personal responsibility for solving your own problems then your life is always going to suck. It’s your personal energy that influences how your life is going to turn out and if you’re always feeling sorry for yourself, blaming others for your woes, well it’s just going to continue, because that is what you are putting out. It's not about a god, it's about energy.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
    • fred

      Laughing
      You said "if you believe in god, then doesn't that really count out any possibility of "luck"?"
      If that is true since you do not believe in God your discovery of Neptune was not by mathmatical prediction but by pure luck?

      September 8, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Pat No offense–ok maybe some offense–but maybe you should be telling starving African children that the reason they're hungry is because they don't want food bad enough. I don't buy one bit of that philosophy. Wanting something does not make it so.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Pat And everything you are claiming that I've been saying is in direct contrast with what I've actually been saying. I'm saying you need to be active, invite God in, hold yourself responsible for the actions you make or fail to make, and don't expect God to grant wishes. That's what prayer is about.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
    • Pat

      "African children that the reason they're hungry is because they don't want food bad enough"

      Well praying to your God definitely isn't working so apply your response to yourself. If the men and women in Africa would learn from their mistakes, they would realize constantly having children isn't solving their starvation problem. They should be bringing children into the world the can't feed. I have actually personally given millions of pounds of food to that cause, what have you done? What has your god done? Nothing.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • Pat

      That's was suppose to be shouldn't be.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Pat You're really not getting what I've been saying this whole time, are you? I'm telling you that Christians must be active and taking care those in need. What have I done? I've tended to abused orphans and abandoned babies, I've built houses, donated money for food and education to name a few. What has God done? Well if you believe He exists, you can ask the Salvation Army (a Christian organization) or the thousands of missionaries who felt called by God to feed the hungry and tend to the sick. Even the Bible condemns those that see someone in need, say "I pray for you ailments," then carries on their merry way.

      If you believe in cause and effect–don't have more kids so they won't go hungry–why even mention the nonsense about energies? In one breath you attributed your success to your desire to succeed, then in the next you blame the misfortunes of a child on circu.mstance beyond the child's control. So which is it? Circu.mstance or "energies"?

      September 8, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
    • LinCA

      The christian god only answers prayers of true christians. All unanswered prayers to the christian god are the ones from christians-in-name-only (CINOs).

      Because the christian god is all-knowing, he (or she) already knows what the true christian is going to pray for, as he (or she) has predetermined it that way. Prayer is simply the christian god making his followers ask him (or her) to continue doing whatever he (or she) was intending to do all along.

      Even a prayer from a non-CINO that appears to go unanswered, is really answered anyway. It is answered to show the non-CINO that (s)he is insignificant. It lets the prayor (or is it prayee?) know that his (or her) god will do as he (or she) pleases and doesn't really give a shit about his (or her) followers.

      I hope that clears it up.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
    • fred

      Pat,
      Looks like you applied the principles of Jesus and things worked out for you. Congrats ! You can also apply your vision wall to Christianity and it works. Let us put the following on the wall: Jesus I invite you into my life, help me find your truth. visualize a heaven waiting where all the good in this life helps those behind me and the joy of being with Christ fills me to overflowing for an eternity. I will store up my treasures in heaven where moth and rust do not destroy. Action plan: Pray Lord Jesus I am going to read your word please guide me in your ways as I read. Read the red letter addition of the NIV Study Bible starting with Matthew. Do this for 30 minutes a day minimum or longer. You will have all that you were designed for now plus assurance for eternity.

      September 8, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Laughing

      @fred

      You made no sense, try again.

      @A Theist

      Ok so basically your saying there was still cosmic significance for the dog to survive an operation so regardless of prayer, god interceded to save the dog because he needed to. Fine, I guess I can accept that as a theological explanation, however you did point out that a pray to save a dogs life actually falls into the sin of pride, so shouldn't that person actually be punished? It seems like an awfully tricky minefield to navigate if prayers to save someone or something important is actually considered prideful and thus sinful.

      As for the chosen people comment. You confused me even more. If Israel is gods chosen land, jews his chosen people, then doesn't that make the who NT moot, or at least Paul;s portion. It can probably be argued that all of Jesus's teachings were meant for jews and only jews but it was Paul's idea to go and bring those to the gentiles and open it up. So with that in mind are jesus's teachings even really applicable to anyone outside of the jewish faith? If you believe that god has given the power to the jews to survive in the face of extreme adversity and favors them, biblically speaking and reading your coment correctly, then why haven't you converted to Judaism, or at least Jews for Jesus? aren't Jews for Jesus actually then the best option for someone who believes in Jesus?

      @JW
      A rock at the windshield? Did it crack your windshield or just give you a jump? I can say I generally don't get to and from work without throwin the bird at least 5 times a day, why hasn't god thrown rocks at me?

      September 8, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
    • fred

      LinCA
      Not from California Lin re read Phillipians "think upon that which is excellent, ture, pure, lovely – whatever is praisworthy or admirable and the peace that transends all understanding will be with you."

      As to prayer it is communication with our Lord. If you are not a cino then you are walking with God already and in His will. This prayer begins with giving praise and glory to God for the great things he has done humbly recognizing who God is and our postiion in Christ. Then at some point latter we share our life which includes preceived needs and wants confident the Holy Spirit will properly reveal what we are really after in Jesus Name.

      Is that what you said or did I miss something ?

      September 8, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Laughing
      Well it depends on what you mean by punished. I know that sounds like a sematic turn-around, but let me explain. The Bible says God disciplines his children (that is, that if you claim to follow Him, He will attempt to correct you when you are led astray). So one fathomable punishment God could have in this case–which would be a part of His will–would be to allow you to continue to pray for what you want, but "coincidentally" you prayers may continue to go "unanswered" (a negative outcome occurs). At this point you can continue to deceive yourself and pray for what you ask–continuing in pride–in which case God may up the ante to make it clear that you are in sin. If by punishment you mean hel|, well I have to say what I believe about hel| is a little more complex than, "Unless ALL my sins are asked to be forgiven before I die, I'm going to hel|." So in that case it really depends :P. And let me clarify, the sin was not the prayer, it was the mindset of the prayer. If I come to God and think, God what are you going to give me today, how are you going to help me? Then I've as_serted my position and importance above God's, and so for that reason I have sinned. God doesn't work with rigid rules like many as_sume. He has high standards, but simply because I pray "God please give me comfort," that does not necessarily mean I am sinning. My point about pride was really directed to admittedly type-cast the sorts of people who pray "God give me...." by indicating their pride in many aspects of life. I wasn't trying to say that those prayers are some secret sin people commit all the time :P.

      Well, God made a promise that Jews were his chosen people. If you follow the Christian faith accurately, "Christian" is really a term for a type of Messianic Jew. Jesus was Jewish after all, and many of the first believers called themselves Jewish as well. It wasn't until the Romans mockingly called the followers Christians–meaning "mini-Christs"–did the followers like the term and adapt it as their own. The purpose of Christ's teachings was to say that the Jewish Law was not the crux of following God. Gentiles are simply those that did not follow Jewish law prior to accepting Christ, where as the Jews accepted Christ as their Messiah. I haven't converted to Judaism because they do not accept Jesus as the Messiah. The belief of Christians is that the believe in the same God, but that they missed the crucial point that Jesus is the Christ (it says in Revelation that many Jews will be given an opportunity to accept Him before God comes back–a whole different debate). Because of this, they still feel bound by the Law (eat Kosher foods, etc.). Conversely, Christians no longer focus on the Law (the rules like the Ten Commandments) but instead commune with God through Christ and the Holy Spirit–another topic!–and aim to obey God by following His will. The teachings of Paul in this sense become quite tricky, because in one sense they reject the Law as the authority for salvation, but in another, we should respect the principles and the reason they were ever written–to obey God's wishes, etc. These are really great questions, and can become quite Theologically dense quickly. I hope I'm answering them well enough!

      September 8, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
    • Pat

      “What has God done? Well if you believe He exists, you can ask the Salvation Army (a Christian organization) or the thousands of missionaries who felt called by God to feed the hungry and tend to the sick. Even the Bible condemns those that see someone in need, say "I pray for you ailments," then carries on their merry way.”

      That’s still people doing all those things it has nothing to do with a god. I don’t believe in a god but yet I do something every week for those in need. It takes away from the person when you say it’s a god, because it absolutely is not.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • J.W

      Well Laughing since I claim to be a follower of God he holds me to a higher standard. I am his representative.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
    • J.W

      Oh it didnt realy crack. It looks like it crack but it is still smooth.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
    • Cody

      "I am his representative."

      If that is anything like the rest of the christian people it's not something you should be proud of dude. So many of you are nothing like your christ.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
    • fred

      Pat,
      You continue to modle the things Jesus said we should be doing with our lives, that is great. Although sometimes I am charitable out of guilt or tax reasons I am mostly that way out of compassion. That compassion came from a conversion expirience I had a while back because I was not as genereous before I Knew Jesus.
      As to my "Vision wall" it includes a section to earn enough to help others. Doing charity with God does not deminish the act unless I use the gift as a hook to bring someone to Christ.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • Laughing

      @A Theist

      OoooK so I'm going to try and hit every point you make though with the disclaimer that I'm probably going to miss something

      So you're saying that god would just ignore prayers asked of him unless they have cosmic significance and it coincidentally aligns with god and yours wishes, however the prayers are being "answered" technically. I guess my issue is, you've thrown another wrench into figuring out when prayers are being answered or not. Not only is it tough to try and pinpoint an answered prayer, but now you're saying that some prayers that were "answered" were actually just a cosmic coincidence.

      You're explanation about judaism is all well and good, except that you said in the response above that if god is said to be watching out for anybody on earth and any nation, its israel and the jewish people. Shouldn't that make you worried that christianity has it wrong considering god isn't really watching out for a christian nation, but instead the only jewish nation that's smaller than the state of New Jersey? I grew up jewish so I know my way around the religion and its intricacies, I also took a Paul intensive course in college so I have a solid idea about the teachings of paul (well at least the veriable letters of Paul specifically and not some of the ones that might have had ghost authors). My real point I was trying to make though, is that the early followers of christ might have been jewish, or a mix of jewish and gentile, in todays world however christians are not jews just as muslims are not jews even though all three religions originate with Abraham. My real question though is, I can understand why you haven't converted to Judaism, obviously its a dealbreaker with the jesus thing, by why not become a Jew for Jesus, isn't that what jesus would have wanted? He was the one preaching everything in the name of judaism, for jews, not gentiles. Spreading his message to gentiles was probably something he didn't have in mind, that was whay Paul had in mind though. Then again, Paul was an anti-semitic prat who claims to have had a vision that gave him carte blanche to go around torturing his own people in the name of jesus.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
    • Christine

      Well if you believe He exists, you can ask the Salvation Army (a Christian organization) or the thousands of missionaries who felt called by God to feed the hungry and tend to the sick.”

      Many workers for the salvation army get benefits for doing so too. The Salvation Army offers a robust benefits package to our regular, full-time employees. Retirement plans include a Pension Plan for eligible employees, as well as the opportunity to participate in a tax deferred annuity program. The Salvation Army has an Educational Assistance Program available to employees who are seeking to build on their educational foundation.

      Maybe those looking for work should try getting at job at the salvation army. 😉

      September 8, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
    • Laughing

      @JW

      That sucks, so basically because you're his follower he expects you to not even stick one toe out of line? It's sort of like making the suck-up go to the front of the line and letting the bad kids in the back of the line get away with pushing and shoving and stuff. Even a new kindergarten teacher knows that the bad kids need to have an eye on them, so shouldn't I get a least a dent in my windshield once and a while?

      September 8, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
    • J.W

      Yeah but there are some of those kids that are lost causes, so the teacher just tries to make sure they don't bother the other kids.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
    • Laughing

      @JW

      Then shouldn't god put all atheists "at the front of the line" so to speak? I mean we're all tehcnically lost causes, so why let us bother the other kids?

      September 8, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
    • J.W

      No Laughing he is trying to hide you. That way when the Christian parents come for parent-God conferences they wont see you. Think of me as a nerd. The cool kids look at nerds like they are no fun, but the nerds like being nerds.

      September 8, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Pat
      That’s still people doing all those things it has nothing to do with a god. I don’t believe in a god but yet I do something every week for those in need. It takes away from the person when you say it’s a god, because it absolutely is not.

      I didn't say people couldn't do good without believing in God. But that wasn't your question, was it? You said "what has God done?" These people, like me, believe in God and felt called because He asked them to help those in need (by conviction and compas.sion, etc.) I'm not just saying it's God, they are too. Take the issue up with them.

      And here's where the theological debate will ensue, and unfortunately we will be at ends from the get-go, since you do not believe that God exists. I argue that God does more than just send people over there to help those in need. He sends rain and unseen or unnoticed blessings their way every day. You will likely ask, "Why does God even allow it to happen in the first place? He could end the suffering!" And this is where I will give you a theological answer supported by the Bible (which you reject as an authority) and thus we will reach in inevitable impas.se. If you are willing to listen to and consider my explanation theologically, I will give it to you. Otherwise it sounds like you've already made up your mind on the matter, so there's not much point in continuing further.

      September 8, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • fred

      A Theist
      OK, you got my attention so I will pray that Pat asks you why and hears your response.

      September 8, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
    • J.W

      LOL fred well now Pat is not going to want to ask because that will mean your prayer came true. I did something like that on this blog once. I said I was going to pray about something and I bet it will come true soon. And I prayed that an atheist would answer my comment lol.

      September 8, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Laughing
      No worries if you miss something.

      So you're saying that god would just ignore prayers asked of him unless they have cosmic significance and it coincidentally aligns with god and yours wishes...

      There's a few subtle differences from what you said here. 1) God never ignores a prayer, He listens to all prayers intently. That being said, it's obvious that He doesn't answer all of them ;). 2) By cosmis significance I as.sume you mean "in line with His will" and again, I will say there is a subtlety here that is important to note. That is, can you pray for something in line with God's will but that may not intersect with God's plan? Before you answer that, allow me to explain by what I mean for both terms. By God's will I mean that anything that God would approve of, that is an act of Goodness and holiness. For example, by loving others I am acting in God's will at any moment. God's plan however, refers to how he expects things to carry out. He may plan for me to marry someone (I can equally not marry someone, and still be within God's will) or plan for me to move somewhere, etc. In one word we see purpose, and in the other we see way by which that purpose is carried out. The two are inherently connected and interwoven, but there are some singularities about each. A perfect example of why someone should pray is that of Abraham. God told Abraham He would destroy Sodom and Gomorrah because they were depraved peoples. Abraham asked God three times, if it was in His will, that He should spare the cities if there were even just a few righteous. Each time Abraham "changed God's mind" by setting the necessary number of righteous lower than before (until it reached quite a small number!). Yet each time God came back and said, "Sorry, there aren't even that many there." Prayers are, in essence, asking God to carry out His will, and requesting wherever possible that the plan by which the will is carried out happens in "such and such" a manner. Returning to the night of Christ's crucifixion, Jesus asks for a peace of mind, and God honors it. It's kind of like God's will is a large tube and all the events that carry out in it are small grains of sand. We can ask God that the grains of sand fall in a different manner than intended, so long as they are still carried through the tube. It's a dense Theological question, and with it comes questions such as, "what does that mean about God's omniscience, since He knows what we will pray?" and "Can we really change God's mind?" These are questions that are still highly debated, but I can share my rough personal belief if you care to hear it. So prayers are definitively "answered" when we see that God's will is carried out in the area we prayed about, or when we see a part of God's plan that plays out, according to His will. To return to the main article, prayers about "giving me a job" may or may not play into God's will, but it sounds like such a prayer is coming through the lens of the human and not trying to see it the way God does.

      Shouldn't that make you worried that christianity has it wrong considering god isn't really watching out for a christian nation...
      Well on one hand, as I said before, Christians are, in a sense, Messianic Jews. And for this reason one could argue that Christians are also God's chosen people. At the same time, the Bible explicitly states that Christians will likely suffer for their beliefs, and so I'm not worried, but prepared for the worst. If anything, I feel privileged to live in a nation that allows me to believe what I do without persecution–that's enough for me. There is no "Christian nation" and if there was, I do not think God would be protecting it as much as saying, "Why aren't you in other countries helping those in need and sharing the good news? Get your butts out there!" For reasons well beyond the scope of prayer and the protection of Israel, I am confident in my faith in Christ–not absolutely certain, or aggressive, just confident.

      My real question though is, I can understand why you haven't converted to Judaism, obviously its a dealbreaker with the jesus thing, by why not become a Jew for Jesus, isn't that what jesus would have wanted?

      Do you mean by name? As in, I should call myself a "Jew for Jesus"? Or was it more of a change of faith? If it's a matter of faith, the crux of the argument behind being a "Jew for Jesus" vs. a "Christian" is that a Christian no longer is bound to the Law, but to the teachings of Christ. Jesus wanted people to follow Him (sounds arrogant, but I guess if you believe you are God, it's not a big deal), and to turn to God again. He got rather ticked off at men like the Pharisees who "followed the Law" but did not have their hearts in the right place. For me I'd say that by today's standards, much of Judaism is still focused on the Law of Moses, which is something I believe we no longer have to be bound to. I hope that makes sense, it's kind of a long-winded discussion topic, to be honest.

      that was whay Paul had in mind though. Then again, Paul was an anti-semitic prat who claims to have had a vision that gave him carte blanche to go around torturing his own people in the name of jesus.

      Haha I guess it depends on the Paul you read up on, but I doubt Paul could have been an anti-semite, since he was also a Jew–and an ex-leader at that! :P.

      September 8, 2011 at 6:16 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Christine You're giving a bunch of reasons why someone would do something good for someone else. I could do that for almost any other good act of kindness. That doesn't mean that such reasons are the motive for doing the act of kindness. The missionaries I meet make huge sacrifices to go where they feel called to go, even if it doesn't mean they give up everything.

      September 8, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
    • Pat

      "He sends rain and unseen or unnoticed blessings their way every day. "

      So your god is responsible for the devastation on the East coast, and all of the other natural disasters that ruin human life. Yeah, right. If you actually believe that you're more stupid than I thought.

      September 8, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
    • A Theist

      @Pat Oh good, you answered. And look, you asked a modified version of what I said you would ask. (He could end the suffering).

      Allow me to direct you to the comment I made earlier: "You will likely ask, "Why does God even allow it to happen in the first place? He could end the suffering!" And this is where I will give you a theological answer supported by the Bible (which you reject as an authority) and thus we will reach in inevitable impas.se. If you are willing to listen to and consider my explanation theologically, I will give it to you. Otherwise it sounds like you've already made up your mind on the matter, so there's not much point in continuing further."

      September 8, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
    • Pat

      "He could end the suffering!" And this is where I will give you a theological answer supported by the Bible (which you reject as an authority) and thus we will reach in inevitable impas.se. If you are willing to listen to and consider my explanation theologically, I will give it to you. Otherwise it sounds like you've already made up your mind on the matter, so there's not much point in continuing further.""

      So have you made up your mind moron. It's just shows the pathetic thinking of religious people. And we go round and round in a circle.

      September 8, 2011 at 6:33 pm |
    • A Theist

      So have you made up your mind moron. It's just shows the pathetic thinking of religious people. And we go round and round in a circle.

      Yes, we've both "made up our mind"–that's the whole point Pat. We both have different a priori as.sumptions coming into the debate on God (different givens), so it's illogical to carry on a Theological debate. It's not about going round in circles, it's about recognizing where perceptions will alter the ability to carry on a discussion. Through scru.tiny and personal inv.es.tigation I have concluded that the Bible is accurate and the word of God. You have not. For this reason it makes hardly any sense to carry on a debate where I'm using a source you don't think is cr.ed.ible. That's why I asked if you were willing to set aside your given set of beliefs and hyp.oth.etically as.sume the Bible was accurate and the word of God–in which case we could continue onward in the theological debate. Otherwise, there's simply nothing left to dialogue on the matter.

      September 9, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • fred

      A Theist
      Well thank you. God heard my prayer and answered it. Pat came back twice and asked twice. She also heard your response loud and clear at least once if not twice and that was an answer to prayer.
      Now, I will pray some more and see just what Gods will in all of that was.
      Shalom (שָׁלוֹם)

      September 9, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  10. Best Wishes

    We join the church in their prayers over the jobless.

    September 8, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
  11. Prayer

    To those of you who are praying for a job, we join with you and pray for that Job.

    September 8, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
    • Juggling Squirrel-Jesus

      Studies have shown that highly choreographed job dances (like rain dances, but for jobs) are at least as effective as job prayers, so I'd recommend gyrating about while communicating telepathically with your deity.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • GodPot

      I guess the gyrating only grants rain cause now my pants are all wet...

      September 8, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
    • Juggling Squirrel-Jesus

      @GotPot,

      Yeah, that probably won't go over well in an interview. Maybe a little lighter on the gyrating next time.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
    • Bippy, The Lesser Squirrel-God Of Job Dancing

      Oh mighty Juggling Squirrel-Jesus, you do need to remember the rodent-deity union rules for these matters. I aam in charge of the whole job dancing thing – it's my part of the vast theological bureaucracy of the small furry overlords of the universe. You would not want me to put in a grievance to Vinny And Rocko, the Intimidating Chipmunk Gods Of Labor Rules Enforcement.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • Stevie7

      Bippy – apologies. Normally I'd have consulted my union rep, but he's at his time share in the Caribbean.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
    • GodPot

      Bippy is a false God!! It's obvious that Jobs are created by job machines!! I just so happen to have the blueprints for a job machine and I'll sell them to you for the low low price of just 12 easy monthly payments made to me each year for the next 40 years or until I die of $5000 each which will guarantee at least 1 job created, that of me paying bill's and putting food on the table. Thats right, guaranteed!!

      Maybe we just need a new TV show like "Dancing with the Homeless", or maybe "America's Not Got Jobs"...

      September 8, 2011 at 7:45 pm |
    • Bippy, The Lesser Squirrel-God Of Job Dancing

      The job machine only works if you dance first. You also need a Christian to come up with the payments – you tell him that he gets heaven if he pays up or the lake of fire if he doesn't. Works every time with them.

      September 9, 2011 at 1:04 am |
    • Peace2All

      @Bippy & Juggling

      All hail to the 'rodent deities' !

      Peace...

      September 9, 2011 at 1:12 am |
  12. Anton LaVey

    My god I have to laugh. Are people really this foolish? They are called sheep for a reason. lol

    September 8, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Some of us sheep know, love, and respect our Shepherd. What's your excuse besides being lazy and following the wolf? Oh, yes, that darn big ego. Lucifer and you have the same sin (PRIDE) in common.

      Amen.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
    • Anton LaVey

      HeavenSent

      Some of us sheep know, love, and respect our Shepherd. What's your excuse besides being lazy and following the wolf? Oh, yes, that darn big ego. Lucifer and you have the same sin (PRIDE) in common.

      Amen.

      --------
      Funny when a self absorbed person says another has an ego. Lazy??? I find this funny coming from a person who is too lazy to think for themselves and puts their faith in other men. Foolish you are. Sin is good, your god created it.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
  13. Stevie7

    You know the church is desperate for some extra cash when it needs to find such creative ways to expand its fundraising distribution list.

    September 8, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Stevie, some day that cash collection just may help you and yours out.

      Amen.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:51 pm |
    • Stevie7

      Or it will help to keep paying hush money

      That's why I donate my time and money to organizations where I know that only a very low percentage of costs go towards overheads. For most individual churches, this is definitely NOT the case.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:10 pm |
    • William Demuth

      HeavenSent

      Most of the money is used to pay the buggery victims

      September 8, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
    • Anton LaVey

      William Demuth

      HeavenSent

      Most of the money is used to pay the buggery victims

      -----–
      Or prositutes and expensive hotel rooms.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
  14. Brilliant

    If it doesn't work, remember it's all part of Gods plan.

    September 8, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
    • Stevie7

      That, and god doesn't like you.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • Jesus

      God killed how many millions in the Bible. The guy is a sadist. He wants to see people suffer. That's his plan. On the other hand maybe there is no God and all this is just random BS.

      September 8, 2011 at 9:19 pm |
  15. So be it

    Father Bill you got your faith in the right place, get those Resumes and pray over them!
    May those without a Job find their prayer answered, and we join you in your prayers....

    September 8, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
  16. Reality

    The gifts of Free Will and Future are inherent to all the thinking beings in the Universe. This being the case, it is not possible to alter life with prayers. Statistically, your request might come true but it is simply the result of the variability/randomness of Nature..

    So put down your rosaries and prayer beads and stop worshiping/revering cows or bowing to Mecca five times a day. Instead work hard at your job, take care of aging parents, volunteer at a soup kitchen, donate to charities and the poor and continue to follow the proper rules of your religion or any good rules of living as gracious and good human beings.

    September 8, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Tune in Reality. God created NATURE as well as EVERYTHING.

      Amen.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
    • Anton LaVey

      HeavenSent

      Tune in Reality. God created NATURE as well as EVERYTHING.

      Amen.

      ------–
      Yes including sin which is a gift from god. God created good and evil, therfore he is both. He is the creator and satan.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      In fact, God created sin. God created hell, God created man to be sinners and God created man to never be able to meet his standard.

      Assuming Christianity is correct, it's all God's fault.

      It's silly to argue the all knowing creator of everything isn't the creator of something.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
  17. Arlene

    If you ask a non-existent god what it wants, don't expect much. That's all I can say.

    September 8, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
    • BRC

      Though if you ask a person what a god wants you will get a detailed list. i've always found that strange.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:38 pm |
    • Stevie7

      What I've found strange was, if prayer actually works, then wouldn't it be a lot better and a lot less selfish to say, pray for starving children in the horn of Africa who are suffering through one of the worst droughts in recent history? Or world peace? Or a cure for cancer?

      September 8, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Arlene, have you lost your oilcan? Your bones are getting a bit creaky.

      Amen.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:54 pm |
    • Anton LaVey

      HeavenSent

      Arlene, have you lost your oilcan? Your bones are getting a bit creaky.

      Amen.

      -----–
      Here we go again...same ramblings....different story. lol

      September 8, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
  18. jimtanker

    When will these silly people learn that prayer doesnt work?

    September 8, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
  19. Teh Oberschnitzel

    Yes, let's place all those fake resumes and lies upon the altar of a religion that is filled with lies. How pathetic can they get?

    September 8, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Teh, what a slip? That you faked your resume and it's full of lies?

      Amen.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
  20. William Demuth

    HAHAHAHAHA

    How sick these people are!

    September 8, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Dry Bones, dry bones, whatcha gonna do? Dry bones, dry bones, only Jesus love you! Dry bones, dry bones ...

      Amen.

      September 8, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      > Dry Bones, dry bones, whatcha gonna do? Dry bones, dry bones, only Jesus love you! Dry bones, dry bones ...

      Ahhh, the arrogance of Christianity. I'm not wrong, I couldn't be wrong. There's something wrong wtih you!

      September 8, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • Prayer Works! Really! And So Do Ouija Boards!

      If you don't have a job, should you pray for a job, or should you get out there and look for anything you can get?
      If something is broken, should you pray that God fixes it, or should you fix it?
      If you have a problem, should you pray that God solve it, or should you take steps to address it?
      If you want something, should you just pray for it, or should you do what needs to be done to get it?

      Next time you get thirsty when you are in your house alone, try just sitting there and praying that God give you water. When it does not work, then go to the cabinet and proclaim it a miracle that God put a cup there, and yet another miracle that water came out of the faucet when you turned it on, and convince yourself that it was all God's doing, that God indeed answered your prayers.

      September 8, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.