“You have to close your eyes during prayer because the light of God’s presence, and his angels who are with Him, is so bright that it will blind you.”
These words were spoken to a group of children, including myself, by a pastor as we were about to begin our baptismal class.
Blinded if we opened our eyes during prayer?
Punished if we didn’t keep our eyes closed during prayer?
Unfortunately, as Christians there have been many times when we have used fear and intimidation to make people do things that we think is necessary.
Many times when we have claimed God’s punishment over people because they did not adhere to our beliefs.
Many times when we have tried to appear righteous by stating “thus says the Lord” just so we can have power over those who do not fully understand what we believe the Bible says.
And many times when we have confused and manipulated people into thinking that we know better and we have the authority to tell them what to do and how to think.
I was around 11 years old at that time, and I could not believe what the pastor had told us. I could not fathom that by opening my eyes during prayer, I would become blind. You see, I had never heard of anyone ever going blind at church, and it just seemed impossible that everyone closed their eyes during prayer every single time, and to be honest, I had already opened my eyes during prayer before and nothing had happened.
I look back and realize how ridiculous and absurd this statement was. Scaring kids just so they close their eyes during prayer… smh.
And to think, how many other claims have we, as Christians, made that make no sense, only to instill fear in people to do what we think is right.
Let’s be careful with the things we say and make sure that everything we do, the things we claim, are founded on love and kindness, never on fear or manipulation.
#love #kindness #prayer #fear