I was in a church service – or should I say, heaven knows how many I’ve been in 🙄 – where screaming at the top of your lungs was the apparent guarantee that your prayer will be answered.
I don’t know what spirituality culture we… wait. I don’t even know who the “we” are because I would never advocate for such. I don’t know where those who teach us to scream at the top of our lungs if our prayers are to be answered in a congregational church service learned it from. 😐 I’ve actually tried to figure it out, but I can’t.
For me, there are health inconveniences that come with screaming at the top of my lungs in a place with auditorium-level acoustics, along with at least 200 other people screaming. It’s like grinding my teeth when my gums are sore. My ears feel tingly, I squint and have spasms from the deathly shrieks, my head is likely to start banging, and you still want me to join the screaming amidst all those reactions from my body? 😐
That’s just me.
That this screaming and shouting of “amen” and whatever else the speaker asks the congregation to scream is made out to be their tickets to answered prayers, is problematic. We are told, “If you can shout the loudest ‘hallelujah’…”; “If you can shout a thunderous ‘amen’…”; “If your ‘amen’ can swallow that of your neighbour…”. 😐 It becomes a battle of voices. Hypothetically everyone wants their shout to swallow the ones they can hear. That’s the first part.
The second part of this problem is that a lot of these people are doing no more than plain shouting. There is no faith behind those shouts. The goal of the shouter is simply to swallow the other voices; they forget that they need to ignite their faith for their prayers to actually be answered, as opposed to thinking that swallowing the other voices will do it. They’re so carried away by supposedly impressing the heavens with the volumes of their voices that there is no faith to catapult that prayer into takeoff. Prayer without faith is pointless; it’s void.
That is the problem I have with this shouting business in churches – void and faithless shouts to God.
The other minor problem I have is the mentality that you need to shout before God can hear you. What the what?! God is not deaf that He cannot hear you! Why do we need to scream, then? Even when we don’t speak out in our moments of weariness and hopelessness, God hears and sees the thoughts of our hearts. He knows what we want before we even ask! Where then did we get the idea that we need to scream if He is to hear us?
Believe it or not, some church leaders have good motives behind getting the congregation to scream – they believe it gingers the congregation, some believe it wakes the congregation up, others believe it’s an effective way to get the otherwise apathetic or minimally active members of the congregation to pour their hearts out to God. Some other church leaders just like noise – maybe for the ostensible buzz, or due to a warped understanding of God’s hearing abilities.
I actually hate praying in public or around other people – I get distracted by the noise from their loud prayers and chants. I sometimes struggle to hear my own self amidst all that noise and raucousness.
Generally, I have nothing against screaming to God – be it in moments of emotional tension or enthusiasm. I do it at times. However, do it where you wouldn’t be selfishly inconveniencing others. Even in a congregation, there will be people who would rather you don’t scream. It startles some, it unsettles some, it irritates some, it gingers others. More importantly, whether you’re screaming your prayers or not, let faith be in the mix or you’re wasting all that energy. 😕
That’s all for today folks! 😁
P.S. I think I might start saying “I ♥️ you” at the end of my posts. It’s something I’ve picked up from this person I dutifully follow on IG – Professor Phanor.
Until you see me again, ✌🏾. I ♥️ you!