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So many things today are made with a cheap façade – a false front. So much furniture is made with a plastic veneer over particle board. Fake flowers look pretty real, not like the plastic things from years ago. Manufacturers have gotten very good at making things look like the real deal. The more they work at it, the better they get at it. So it is with the Christian façade.

I don’t have any faults or foibles. At least I like others to think I don’t. That in itself is a foible, maybe even a fault. Then when I mess up, I expect people to understand that I am not perfect. They should know that plastic just doesn’t stand up well. I know I am full of imperfections and I know that they know, too. What a cheap façade!

Why do I dig in my feet when I read this verse? Why do I find myself pushing back? Why am I shaking my head “no”? My first thought is that I am not going to tell anybody about some of the greatest concerns in my life – those things that come under the “unspoken” part of the prayer list.

First of all my ego does not like to be bruised. It’s pretty fragile and can be popped like a soap bubble.

Second is being afraid of gossips. Prayer is a good thing but gossip in the name of prayer is not. Prayer is helpful, gossip is destructive. Do we trust other Christians? Do they trust us?

Third is admitting sin. No one likes to do that.

A rote repetitious redundant recycled smattering of words does not bring results. A polished prayer spoken in King James English has no more value that cosmetic jewelry – pretty, but not worth much. However, a prayer spoken from the heart with fervor is effective. The words aren’t as important as the heart.

The point is that to pray for one another intelligently and with heart is to know the need and to care about that need.

“Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” James 5:16.

© copyright 2016 Kevin T Boekhoff