5 Reasons Why I Don’t Pray Anymore

I have a complicated relationship with Christianity.  I grew up in it and was serious about it at one time.  Then, I had a quiet time every day and wrote down prayers in my journal every night.  But a lot of my beliefs have lost their appeal in college.  I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever make my way back into the church — I’m comfortable there, and I know all the right answers, but I don’t like it. This discussion could go on for ages, but here are some of the reasons I don’t pray anymore.

  1. It feels like a lie.  I don’t call myself a Christian — Christ follower — anymore, so praying feels extremely insincere.  Why should I do something I know my heart isn’t in?  It’s a disservice to myself and others.
  2. It doesn’t connect me to God like it’s supposed to.  I never got any responses in my life or in my quiet time.  For years, praying felt like I was just talking to myself.  Consequently…
  3. It feels like a waste of time.  Why should I pray when no one is listening?
  4. I don’t know how.  I’ve grown up in the church, and I’ve heard every possible way to pray.  I don’t feel that I ever found my own “style” or way to pray, so it always felt like I was just a child repeating phrases without knowing what they meant.
  5. I associate it with guilt.  It’s difficult to keep my mind on track when praying, and that would make me feel like a bad Christian.  My entire relationship with Christ was a cycle of guilt and trying again and failing and more and more guilt.

Sometimes, I wish I could still pray.  I’ve had friends and family members who I honestly wanted to pray for.  But I can’t anymore.  And that’s fine.  For now, I’m happier with thinking through my life on my own terms.

Do you feel like I do?  If you pray, why?

8 comments

  1. Hello, I know that prayer isn’t all excited and doesn’t feel fun, but I have to tell you that’s where being a child OF GOD is, in a continually intimate relationship WITH JESUS. Its also a sacrifice, of time to give GOD, but HE is real. I had an encounter WITH HIM, never in my life have I experienced what I did IN HIM. GOD Bless you. And genuinely talked TO THE LORD, with true meaning behind words, its not about the quantity of time you pray but about the quality, the sincerity in the words you use.

  2. I dont pray anymore because I have depression. It became blindingly obvious that ‘God’ wasnt going to remove the depression, no matter how much I prayed. I realised it was all up to me to get better, and at that point ‘God’ stopped becoming the all-powerful all-loving Father, and has slowly been shrinking ever since.

  3. I understand. Completely. I didn’t grow up in the church, but came to it during my 20s. I am now in the midst of a ‘crisis of faith’. I just read ‘When We Were On Fire’. As a fellow bibliophile, give it a read. It was eye opening, at least for me.

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