Critique of Pastor Groeschel’s “I Want to Believe But…” Sermon Series (Re: Unanswered Prayer, etc)

Critique of Pastor Groeschel’s “I Want to Believe But…” Sermon Series

Christian Post recently published this summary of Groeschel’s sermons, and I take strong issue with it, which I will explain below the long excerpts from the page – but if I didn’t blog my criticisms of this guy’s sermon, I was going to go nuts -several of his points or assumptions annoyed me up the wall:

(Link): God Is Not Your Puppet, Says Pastor Craig Groeschel by A. Kumar

Here are some excerpts from that page, and I will comment on this below the excerpts, which is pretty long, so please bear with me:

Pastor Craig Groeschel, senior pastor of Life.Church, has started a new series, “I Want to Believe, But…,” to address difficulties some have in believing in God.

In the series’ first sermon on Sunday, the megachurch pastor dealt with the notion that God should give us exactly what we want and when we want it.
“God is too big to be a puppet of mine,” he stressed.

Some believe in God and others don’t, but there’s “a newer category of people that are saying, ‘I wanna believe in God but I’m struggling to,'” the popular pastor said as he introduced the (Link): series to the congregation on Sunday, the 21st anniversary of the church.

There are many who think they are rejecting God but they are actually not rejecting the true God, Groeschel explained. What they’re doing is “rejecting a distorted view of who God really is.”

Since we live in an “on-demand” world, where we want everything now, we expect the same from God, the pastor added, explaining that when we pray to an “on-demand” God, we want the exact results as we want and we want them now. And when we don’t get the answer in this fashion, we think maybe God is not all powerful or good.

But that’s a distorted view of God, he underlined. “On-demand God doesn’t exist.”

….Groeschel told thousands of listeners at his church in Edmond, Oklahoma, and many more watching online. “God doesn’t exist to serve us. We exist to serve Him,” he said, adding that we are not the main characters in the Bible.

…Three, “His [God’s] presence is always enough.”

When you become a fully committed follower of God, that means you’re really seeking Him first, the pastor explained, and you want your life to count eternally.

— (end excerpt) —-

Someone like me is likely the intended audience for this sermon series.

Here is a recap for any new readers: I was a conservative Christians since prior to the age of turning ten years old. Somewhere along in my late 30s or early 40s, I began having doubts about the Christian faith, for various reasons.

One of my personal reasons for being more skeptical now: God does not answer prayer, despite the fact he says in the Bible that he will, and that he will meet our needs. I have a few other reasons I am drifting into Agnostic Seas, but that is one of the several.

The fact remains that the Bible itself says that God answers prayers, he will meet all your needs, and God makes various other promises in the entire Bible (some of which I have pasted in farther below).

God does not say in the Bible that if you pray to him for something, that this is selfish of you, and you should only concern yourself with spiritual matters, or in glorifying him, or in serving him.

The reality is, God is not answering all prayers, is not meeting all my needs, and he is not keeping all the promises he’s made in the Bible. This is my LIVED EXPERIENCE.

And I’ve been a “goody goody” my entire life – I don’t sleep around, abuse drugs, I am not selfish, I don’t pray from wrong motives etc, and so on.

At this point, your average Christian starts accusing me, or people like me, who are undergoing severe doubt of God, of being a “Word of Faither.”

I already told you, I ain’t no such thing. Never have been a WOF.

I was brought up in conservative Southern Baptist churches, and I can tell you that SBs most assuredly do not adhere to Pentecostal, Charismatic, stuff like WOF (Word of Faith) theology.

SBs look down their noses at those sorts of teachings and denominations, they pick them apart, and mock them. I was brought up disdaining or being highly skeptical of things such as WoF.

Deep down inside, you (the Christian) have no explanation for the reality I’m living with, the fact that my prayers are not being answered and the Bible’s promises are not coming to pass for me, except to tell me I must believe in false “Word of Faith” doctrine, or to accuse me of sh_t I have not done, like “pray from wrong motive.”

Christians who are faced with the uncomfortable truth that not all the stuff in the Bible is true, or does not come true, face anxiety, they cannot accept this reality, and choose to put the blame back on to YOU, who brings these topics up.

So, I will be told by Christians that my views of God are “distorted,” that I am probably praying from “selfish” motives, it will be assumed quite wrongly that I must be living in on-going unrepentant sin, etc.

In other words. Christians will victim-blame me over this subject the way Job’s friends in the Old Testament victim blamed Job for Job’s calamities, that were not due to Job’s sin or any wrong-doing by Job. (I wrote about that (Link): here)

By the way, I wrote a primer a couple weeks back advising Christians on how NOT to talk to semi-former Christians such as myself, and I discuss my own faith crisis more here:

(Link): One Foot in Christianity One Foot in Agnosticism – In A Faith Crisis

As I mention on that page, I am NOT, nor have I ever been, a “Word of Faither.”

I have never been a believer in “The Prosperity Gospel,” which also goes by the names “Blab It and Grab It,” and “Wealth and Health.”

One of the reasons I want to get that fact out of the way upfront and emphasize the hell out of it is that the moment you tell Christians that one reason you no longer have so much faith in God, the Bible, and are veering off into Agnosticism, is due to unanswered prayer – God did not give you what you were asking him for – immediately, the Christian you are talking with will go into Victim-Blaming Mode.

Christians are loathe or afraid to admit that God does not work in real life the way the Bible says that he can and will act or react.

One of their first reactions in Victim Blaming Mode is to angrily accuse you of being a “Word of Faither” who treats God like a vending machine or a Genie in a magic bottle, and how dare you, they say, expect God to actually answer your prayers, and answer them in a timely fashion.

They hint you are a selfish person and should just be happy knowing God, feeling God’s presence, and have warm, fuzzy feelings knowing Jesus died on a cross for you – some of that is spiritual, abstract goobeldy-gook which does not help me get my current needs met in the here and now.

I don’t know why Christians tell folks like me to content myself in Jesus’ death for me or in God’s presence (that I cannot even feel), or that God is groovy, when the Bible itself says this:

If one of you says to them [a person in need], “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? (from James 2)

—end bible quote—

If someone is hungry, the Bible says to Christians that you give that person a bowl of soup or a sandwich.

The Bible says do NOT sermonize, spiritualize their hunger away (tell them to ignore the hungry rumble in their tummy to just think of how AWESOME Jesus is, and one day they will be in Heaven!!), and give them Jesus-y, flowerly platitudes about loving Jesus and just warm yourself knowing Jesus loves you.

But this is precisely what guys like pastor Groeschel do when unmarried women like me say things like this:

“I am over the age of 40, never married, lonely, horny, and would appreciate the F_CK out of God sending me a decent guy to be my husband really soon now, I’ve already been waiting DECADES, stop telling a mid-40s woman like me that I’m being impatient, I should trust the Lord’s timing…”

Guys like him unhelpfully play up the,

“Stop thinking God should send you anything, you ingrate. You certainly should not expect God to answer any of your prayers in YOUR time! You’re selfish for wanting marriage, too. Just remember this ain’t eternity, fantasize about Pie in the Sky, enjoy God’s presence, remember Jesus loves you….”

-and all sorts of spiritual mumbo-jumbo shtick that does NADA, nunca, nothing to help me get my very real needs met.

Telling me to just think about God and such vague-ish spiritual foo-foo doesn’t erase or dampen my needs, hon. Please, let’s get real, here.

Many Christians act as though if you are disappointed with God (over this unanswered prayer issue), that you are selfish, believe in a false view of God, and so forth.

Some of these same Christians might go on to downplay God’s lack of answering your prayer by saying you should really be grateful for the intangible things that are not helping you in your current situation or disappointment.

Let me use an example to give you an idea. I have met, through this blog and elsewhere online, women now in their late 40s or older who had wanted to have biological children.

However, they were either infertile and could not conceive or they never married and believe in having only children within marriage.

To this day, these ladies shared with me they feel deeply hurt, angry, confused or bewildered that God never granted them children. And more than one shared with me they prayed fervently for YEARS that God would permit them to have kids of their own.

However, God never allowed these women to marry and hence have kids. Or, he did not clear up their health issues that prevented them from having a baby.

And yet, sometimes Christians will tell these women they are selfish for wanting children of their own, they will be told just to volunteer at the church nursery, or to simply “delight themselves in the Lord.”

In other words, women in such a personally painful situation will be given very vapid, shallow responses, or unwanted advice, by Christians.

Telling a woman who deeply wants a biological child of her own to just focus on spiritual, fuzzy, feel good, chee-chee is cheap. It’s insensitive. It’s not truly grappling with the emotional pain she is in.

It’s not “weeping with the one who weeps.”

Christians need to stop slapping happy face bumper stickers on to people’s pain. Stop giving them simplistic answers peppered with Bible verses.

Stop shaming such people for feeling hurt, disappointed, angry, upset or confused at God or with God. Stop shaming them for having a need or a desire (such as having a child, or having their family member healed of cancer, whatever) that does not squarely revolve around God, serving God, or sharing the Gospel.

Stop framing these people, or their prayers, or their desires, as being “selfish” and so on.

Stop giving out “Chinese fortune cookie” type answers to people who are deeply wounded that the deepest desire of their heart they prayed to God about was NOT resolved in their favor.

There is no amount of pious, spiritual-sounding answers and platitudes laced with Bible verses that will comfort such a person or cheer them up. All it does is cheapen their experience and make them feel even more isolated and misunderstood.

The Bible itself is chock full of promises and examples in the Old and New Testaments of things such as of infertile women who prayed and asked God for children of their own.

One example that comes to mind is Hannah. She was infertile and wanted a baby, so she prayed to God at the Temple, quite fervently, that God would permit her to become pregnant.

You can read about her at this Bible site: (Link): 1 Samuel 1

Here is an excerpt from that biblical passage:

Once when they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh, Hannah stood up. Now Eli the priest was sitting on his chair by the doorpost of the Lord’s house. 10 In her deep anguish Hannah prayed to the Lord, weeping bitterly.

And she made a vow, saying, “Lord Almighty, if you will only look on your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.”

—–(end biblical excerpt)—–

Later in that passage, we read:

20 So in the course of time Hannah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”

—–(end biblical excerpt)—–

Another passage in the Bible has a similar story.

A prophet of God not only promises a barren woman who wants a baby that she will have one, but he promises her that this will come to pass within a certain time frame (this is from 2 Kings):

“About this time next year,” Elisha [God’s prophet] said [to the barren woman], “you will hold a son in your arms.” “No, my lord!” she objected. “Please, man of God, don’t mislead your servant!”

But the woman became pregnant, and the next year about that same time she gave birth to a son, just as Elisha had told her.

—–(end biblical excerpt)—–

Please also note that these women wanted children for themselves. They weren’t particularly framing their wants and desires in any way of how to ‘serve God,’ but notice that the God of the Bible is FINE with this.

He’s cool with it. God is fine with people having some wants and desires for their own sake, even if it means such a want is not about “serving God” or “spreading the Gospel.”

God totally gets that some infertile women just want to have a baby, just so they can have a baby to cuddle, and it doesn’t have a DAMN THING to do with “glorifying God” or “serving God” or “putting Jesus first” or whatever other pious sounding, shaming drivel pastors like to spout.

If you were brought up in a half way decent family when you were a kid (assuming your parents weren’t abusive or jerks), did they ever shame you when it was your birthday or Christmas was around the corner, and you were just dying for a new doll, new teddy bear, or new video game, or whatever item it was you wanted?

Did your parents just go out and purchase that gift for you, or did they sit there and lecture and shame you about how you just wanting something for you was so horribly selfish?

Yeah, well, my parents (despite all their parenting flaws I sometimes lament about on this blog) were cool about me wanting presents. And I think that was very good of them.

Any time I asked for a new Atari 2600 video game cartridge when I was a kid, my parents would buy it and give it to me for Christmas. They did not scold or shame me for wanting a toy, or for asking for a toy.

My parents understood that I was asking for the toy for me, because I wanted to play with that toy. I had no ulterior noble, altruistic motives for asking for that toy – I was not going to share it or give it to charity.

And my parents were still cool with that. My parents wanted me to have fun and enjoy the holidays or my birthday.

Even Jesus Christ in the Bible conveys this notion – that God the Father is FINE with people wanting something simply for the sake of wanting it.

Jesus does not say that it’s selfish or wrong for you to want something all for yourself, even if it has nothing to do with “serving God.”

For example (this is Jesus speaking):

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!… (Source: Matthew 7)

— (end biblical quote) —

I don’t see anything in there where Jesus stops to scold a person: “How dare you ask God for a loaf of bread you selfish oaf!”

No. Jesus is okay with a kid asking his parents for a loaf of bread, and says God is the same way – you can ask God for bread, and he’s not going to give you a snake or a rock instead.

So, in the context of unanswered prayer, where Rev. Groeschel says,

“God doesn’t exist to serve us. We exist to serve Him,” he said, adding that we are not the main characters in the Bible.

—(end quote)—

-just doesn’t fit. The Bible itself does not equate wanting or expecting God to answer our petitions to be a situation of us thinking God serves us, or us being selfish.

There is a Bible verse that says, “You have not because you ask not.” That is, if there is something you are wanting or needing, you are supposed to pray and ask God for it. And the text does not say the thing you are wanting has to be something that can or will be used to “serve God.”

As for Groschel’s contention that we do not have an “on demand” God, I call partial baloney on that.

Let us review:

“About this time next year,” Elisha [God’s prophet] said [to the barren woman], “you will hold a son in your arms.” “No, my lord!” she objected. “Please, man of God, don’t mislead your servant!”

But the woman became pregnant, and the next year about that same time she gave birth to a son, just as Elisha had told her.

—–(end biblical excerpt)—–

Look at that. That woman was barren and wanting a child. God granted her one almost instantly. The woman’s desire, after she met the prophet, was granted in a timely fashion by God.

The prophet told her “by this time next year” she would have her desire granted. And the text says, sure enough, she got her request granted over the next few months.

Also, over the years, I have heard or listened to a million testimonies, most by Christians on Christian TV shows, whose prayers – for healing, financial help, marriage restoration, what have you – were answered immediately or almost immediately.

From what I’ve seen in the Bible, it may be true that in some cases, God does keep a person waiting for awhile before he answers a prayer they have, but that is not always the case.

For someone trapped under a burning car who prays to God for immediate help, they need God to aid them then and there, or else they will die. So they sort of do need for God to be “on demand” in those moments.

I have wanted to be married since I was around ten or so years old (wanted it ever since that young age but knew I’d probably be married at age 25 or 30 – I don’t mean to suggest I literally wanted to be married at age ten WHILE I was age ten!).

Way back then, around age ten, I was taught by my mother and other Christians to start petitioning God for a husband, so I did that very thing.

Daily over the next 30 some odd years, I prayed that God would send me a spouse. I am in my mid-40s now and still single (have never married).

I just saw a testimony a few months ago by a woman who did not get her first marriage until she turned 54 or 58 years old.

Let me tell you something, these finger-wagging, shaming sermons where preachers like Groeschel tell you that it’s wrong for you to want “X” (whatever X may be), or to portray you as being too impatient or unrealistic for wanting or thinking God should answer you in a timely fashion, is inappropriate, insensitive, and unrealistic:

Buddy, I ain’t getting any younger.

There are indeed SOME things in life that God needs to send a person pronto, because time marches on. Time is a factor.

A woman who wants a kid, for example – it would be ten times easier on her if God got her pregnant when she was 30 years old, as opposed to making her wait until she turns 80.

Would YOU want to be chasing a toddler around when you are 80 years old and in the early stages of dementia, have creaky hips, arthritis in your knees which makes it difficult to run after a small child, etc?

Hell no, you would not. Ergo, it makes more sense and is more wise and considerate of God to send such a woman a baby when she is 30 years old than when she is 80.

Unlike obnoxious Southern Baptist “early marriage” advocates, I am not saying it is “wrong” or “sinful” for someone to have a first marriage at the age of 40 or older but – how shall I explain this?

I’ll take a stab at it:

At times, I f_cking resent that I am still single at my mid-40s. I have had to endure loneliness and other negative things like that for years and years now. I’d like to have companionship. Someone to cuddle with on the couch while watching cable or just shoot the breeze with.

Most women my age have been married for ten or more years by now. My preference would have been to marry by my late 20s to mid 30s, at the latest. (I was engaged years ago but dumped the guy.)

Lord Jeebus on a Ritz Cracker, mid-40s (or older) is too f_cking long to make a woman wait for marriage.

I do NOT want a first marriage to happen at age 50, 55, or 60. That is f_cking ridiculous and highly unfair to me. I should be enjoying THESE YEARS, THIS TIME, with a husband, but time is just passing me by.

If there is a God in Heaven, he most certainly damn sure should send every woman who wants a man a husband by the time she hits 30 or 35, at the latest.

The God of the Bible can do anything, so sending me a man by the time I hit age 35 is not some impossible task for him.

It’s completely reasonable for me to feel angry, upset, and hurt – and to be disappointed in and by God and angry at him – for the fact I am still single in spite of all the years of praying for a husband.

And how dare pastors like this guy try to shame me for wanting a husband (or whatever at all. Some folks are petitioning God for a job, for financial help, to help kick a drug addiction, etc), and they should not be shamed or guilt-tripped for asking for these things in prayer and being angry or hurt when their prayers are not replied to.

Groseschel said:

…Three, “His [God’s] presence is always enough.”

When you become a fully committed follower of God, that means you’re really seeking Him first, the pastor explained, and you want your life to count eternally.

—(end quote)—

No, I don’t find contentment, full purpose, and what have you in Jesus only.

After my mother’s death, I did not feel the presence of God. Since my mother died several years ago, I have not felt God’s presence.

God has not put me, the single gal, into a family (as host Pat Robertson always blathers on about. It’s his stock response to lonely singles who write him for help or advice. Robertson often quotes that bit from the Bible about how “God puts the lonely in families” – no Pat, he does not. I am evidence of that.)

Also, God’s presence doesn’t do didley squat for me when my Libido is in gear, and I want to get laid. God is not going to give me an orgasm, Groeschel, (nor would I want him to – gross, yuck). But you see my point.

People have real or felt needs and desires, and not all of them can be met by thinking lofty thoughts about Jesus or trying to “feel God’s presence.”

I remember after my mother died, I felt alone. I prayed and begged God to let me know if He was there. I begged him to let me feel his presence, and all I got was NOTHING. All I got from God was a big, fat nothing.

Groeschel keeps going on and on in these excerpts I reproduced above about how any one hoping or expecting God to answer a prayer or answer it in a certain time table is “distorted.”

The problem with his view is that it’s not totally biblical.

The Bible itself has example after example of people who prayed to God for healing, money, a baby, a job, military conquest, food, etc, and God sent the person what he or she was asking for, sometimes instantly, or within weeks or months.

The Bible itself tells believers to pray to God – to approach his throne BOLDLY and make your petitions known.

For years and years, up until my early 40s, I put “God’s kingdom” first, not my own needs, and God still did not supply my needs, God did not send me a husband, God didn’t heal my mother of cancer, didn’t send me a billion other things I asked him for.

Here are just a few Bible verses that demonstrate that, contra Groeschel, God makes promises to those reading the text that if they ask him for what they need and want, he will grant it (I have more comments to make below this list of Bible verses and passages):

From John 14:

“And [Jesus said] I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.”

James 4:

“You do not have, because you do not ask”

From Matthew 6:

[Jesus said],

“For the pagans pursue all these things [food, clothing, money to pay the rent, etc], and your Heavenly Father knows that you need them.

33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness,and all these things will be added unto you. 

34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Today has enough trouble of its own.…

From Hebrews 4:

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Ephesians 4:

… according to the eternal purpose that He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In Him and through faith in Him we may enter God’s presence with boldness and confidence

Luke 18:

Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’

“For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”

[the lesson being, never give up asking God in prayer for whatever it is you are seeking]

Phil 4: 19:

“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”

Maybe God does not exist to serve us as Groeschel was saying, but various stories and verses in the Bible says he is happy to serve us. God sometimes CHOOSES of his own will to help us (which may be in the form of “serving” us).

The Bible lays out promises where God says he will grant your wants and needs, even if those wants and needs are not noble, based on God, or are altruistic.

It does not take a Word of Faith theology proponent to see that God and Jesus make promises to folks. It’s in the Bible. God flat out says in the Bible he will help you with this, that and the other, and Jesus says anything you ask for in his name that he will do.

It is a FACT that the Bible contains promises to believers.

Stop telling people who are confused, angry, hurt or whatever, that these promises are not working in their lives are holding to a distorted view of God, that they are being selfish, etc.

Stop tossing out the “just think of eternity!” line you guys always toss out to try to shame or console those of us who are not getting what we had hoped or expected in this life time.

I’m concerned, confused, needy, and hurting in the HERE AND NOW. Asking me to day dream about the day my body is dead and in a box and I’m floating on a cloud playing a harp isn’t helping me now.

Stop victim blaming, trying to find fault with, people like me who tell you that prayer is not working for us, and that the promises in the Bible have not been coming true for us.

Christians need to own up to the fact that the Bible really does at points present God as an “on demand” God who makes promises to us, but in spite of this, God is NOT keeping his biblical promises.

Sometimes your lived reality and experiences reveal that Christianity does not work in real life as it is presented in the Bible, and the stuff in the Bible that God promises does not come to pass for everyone.

This is reality, and I think it’s difficult or painful for a lot of Christians to admit to it. If they admit it, they may feel it disproves their entire faith.

At the end of the day, Rev. Groeschel and other Christians have no frikkin’ idea why each and every person in my position is not getting their decades-long prayers answered by God.

The more he and other Christians try to attribute reasons to unanswered prayer, the more it usually involves victim-blaming, (such as, assuming I am asking God wrong, or I must be in sin, or I am asking from wrong motive), or to go into highly questionable theology to suggest things such as, “you’re only supposed to care about serving God, not God helping you” type stuff.

If this Groeschel guy genuinely means to help the hurting, bravo to him, but as I read these points from his sermon, as shared on the Christian Post site, I find it is heavily on the “Apologetics for God” side, which is not a good approach.

Groeschel seems more concerned with defending God, defending God’s character, than he is in validating or soothing hurting people, and I think that is part of the problem. Instead of attacking and shaming people for admitting where they are doubting and hurting concerning God, why not empathize with them more?

One of the best, most compassionate responses you can give to someone who is hurt, angered, or puzzled as to why God is not answering their prayers is to validate and confirm their experience (don’t doubt it or question or criticize it), and to validate their emotions, and say something like,

‘I am sorry. It must be so frustrating, it must hurt terribly that you keep reaching out to God for this, and you are getting no answers. I don’t know why God has not sent you this thing you have been asking for these many years.
I cannot explain why God seems to answer some people’s prayers, but not other people’s prayers. It does look really unfair. I don’t have any ultimate answers about this. I don’t understand it either. I am so sorry.’

The Bible does not suggest that asking God for something in prayer, or expecting an answer to a prayer, is the same thing as a person viewing God as a puppet – I would suggest that Groeschel not suggest this.

Recall again, as the Bible verses I included above demonstrate, the Bible encourages (ENCOURAGES!) people to take their needs, wants, hopes, and fears to God in prayer. Do not shame or condemn what the Bible permits.


Related Posts:

(Link): One Foot in Christianity One Foot in Agnosticism – In A Faith Crisis

(Link):  How to Deal with Unanswered Prayers via Pastor Bil Cornelius 

(Link): Christian Viewer Expresses Disappointment in God, Wants To Know Why, In Spite of Years of Service, God is Not Helping Him

(Link):  Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God (May 2017)

(Link):   When All We Hear from God is Silence by Diane Markins

(Link): Blaming the Christian for His or Her Own Problem or Unanswered Prayer / Christian Codependency

(Link):   Gordon Robertson’s Quasi Insensitive or Lacking Advice to Cancer Patient / Unanswered Prayer / Christians should just sometimes admit They Do Not Know

(Link): On Prayer and Christ’s Comment to Grant You Anything You Ask in His Name

(Link): Gary Habermas joins Janet to discuss dealing with doubt in the Christian life (Re: Unanswered Prayer)

(Link):  When you show God you don’t want it, that’s when God will give it to you – according to Joel Osteen – I disagree

(Link):  Depressing Testimony: “I Was A Stripper but Jesus Sent Me A Great Christian Husband”

(Link):  Christians Who Can’t Agree on Who The Old Testament Is For and When or If It Applies

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One thought on “Critique of Pastor Groeschel’s “I Want to Believe But…” Sermon Series (Re: Unanswered Prayer, etc)”

  1. I can relate to your pain and suffering. I am in the same boat as our hundreds/thousands others I know. I am 61, and served God in missions and ministry all my life. I got nothing in return, just gave out. I do not take everything in the Bible literally, for example Retribution Theology, the good are blessed and the bad are cursed, I believe is not truth. I see a lot of bad people being blessed and good people like you going without.
    For me the only thing that makes sense is God is not able to meet our needs for marriage because of people’s bad choices. God has to allow people to have a free will, so men make bad choices, they create wars and men, potential husbands, die in those wars, they become gay, they marry girls from third world countries, etc. That makes it hard for God to provide for people like you and me, because he has little to work with regards of Christian or non-Christian men. I once asked God if he had someone for me, but I believe he said, “there is no one to send”.

    So that is how I see it. God loves me and suffers with me, but has allowed people to make choices and those choices affect my choices. I don’t think God will override the laws of the universe, law of numbers, etc. They are just not as many good guys to go around, and God will not create someone out of thin air.

    I do believe there may be justice in the next life, maybe the first will be last, and the last like me and you will be first.

    I stay away from Christians who try to blame me for my situation, which most try to do.

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