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Author Topic:   Stories about prayer
Faith 
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Message 1 of 80 (862363)
09-04-2019 11:38 AM


Instances of prayer in the series "Forensic Files"
One of the things I watch on Netflix from time to time is the series titled "Forensic Files," which is a collection of TV shows on crimes solved by forensics. There are over three hundred of them in the series.

I've been struck by how frequently people mention God in the series. It's very few overall but more than we usually hear about. Mostly it's the families of the victims abut even the investigators some times mention God or prayer in connection with solving the crime.

I didn't keep track of earlier instances of this but recently a couple stood out and I decided to bring them up here. I'm in the 8th collection now but I didn't write down the episodes in which these occurred, just that they were in this collection or the previous one.

One was the victim of a serial killer/rapist, a seventeen year old girl who was the only one of this criminal's victims to escape alive. In her interview she talks about having God inside her and asking God to protect her, then determining that she should cooperate with the man, and trying to see under her blindfold so she might be able to recognize landmarks they pass while she's in the man's car. She saw enough to help them catch the man. He released her into a parking lot and said not to take off the blindfold for five minutes. He'd killed all his other victims.

The other story was about a serial killer of young boys. He'd killed three and was on the loose when a woman prayed that he'd be caught and that she might be involved in catching him. She was a teacher of young children and was setting up her classroom before her day started when this killer drove into the parking lot and came into her classroom and threatened her. She recognized his car. She ran from the room and escaped but got the license number of his car. So her prayer was very specifically answered and her information got the man caught.

I just want to tell these stories because people are always saying prayer doesn't work. Well it works for me and it worked in these cases. I often think when I hear about horrific situations people get into, such as crimes and disasters, how the victims should have prayed and how sad it is that they don't.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001
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Message 3 of 80 (862378)
09-04-2019 12:40 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by AZPaul3
09-04-2019 12:30 PM


Re: Instances of prayer in the series "Forensic Files"
People who trust God would make a point of mentioning praying in such a situation. Most people just don't think of praying, it's usually juts people who are already used to praying. So I think your assumption that people do pray in such dire circumstances is unfortunately not true.

God doesn't always give us what we pray for. There are certain categories of prayer He seems to always answer for me but other categories He doesn't, so I figure He doesn't want me to have what I ask for in those cases.

Sometimes it takes many people praying in concert, and some times it takes persistent prayer and answers come after a long time. Some situations are so convoluted the answer has to wait while a whole series of causes and effects runs its course. There's no way to predict the outcome of prayer in all situations.

But there are instances like those I mention in which it is clear that prayer was answered. Those are the ones I want to document here.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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Message 6 of 80 (862386)
09-04-2019 1:05 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Tangle
09-04-2019 1:01 PM


Re: Instances of prayer in the series "Forensic Files"
The circumstances of the stories are evidence enough that prayer was answered in those cases.

Unless there is evidence that people did in fact pray you can't assume that they did. Even believers forget to pray, which is really stupid of us.

In the Forensics Files cases they are always solved with or without prayer so you could make an issue of that if you want. But some cases take years, decades, to be solved. Asking God for help might have speeded things up.

And yes of course there are lots of cases that never get solved and didn't make it into the TV series for that reason.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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From: Nevada, USA
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Message 10 of 80 (862413)
09-04-2019 9:36 PM


Thread is for reporting answered prayers
I'm not interested in probabilities on this thread. Not all prayer is answered, there may be all kinds of different reasons for that, but that's not what I'm interested in. I just want to present cases that suggest prayers that did get answered. I think the two I presented show that, especially the second one in which specific circumstances the prayer asked for were specifically answered.

If no more examples show up this thread will end here. Otherwise it's available for reports anyone wants to contribute.


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Faith 
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Message 12 of 80 (862415)
09-04-2019 10:50 PM
Reply to: Message 11 by AZPaul3
09-04-2019 10:20 PM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
The thread isn't just for the forensics program, it's for any examples of answered prayer.

Those from my own life that get answered are very often requests to understand a particular problem, maybe a question I have about the creationist debate, or how to understand a particular Bible passage. I once asked for the biblical view of gluttony, and had the amazing experience of finding such references every time I opened the Bible after that. I'd never have guessed there were so many references to that particular sin.

Another instance that comes to mind was one day years ago when I decided to ask God to put me in a situation where I could be of help to someone. I should have prayed that one every day but I just happened to on that particular day. When I was out shopping I saw a man with his hood up in the parking lot and a small child in the car, and I was able to offer my car for him to use his battery cables. I probably would have done that anyway but since I'd prayed for such a situation I take it as answered prayer.

I've been in other situations where I didn't pray but felt some kind of urgency to get somewhere in a hurry and found myself in a position to help a friend as a result.. Since I've been more or less housebound for years now I don't think of being able to be of help to anyone but I probably should nevertheless. Maybe I'll pray for that now and see if I get an answer.

I don't know to what extent God might answer the prayer of an unbeliever since there is scripture that says He doesn't answer scoffers, but nevertheless sometimes He does, so anyone here could pick a situation to pray about, preferably something that would have an unambiguous answer, and see what happens.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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Message 15 of 80 (862419)
09-05-2019 12:42 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by Hyroglyphx
09-04-2019 11:34 PM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
I'm interested in the subject of answered prayer and want to choose examples where it seems clear that is what happened. If others want to discuss the whole topic of why prayers are often not answered that's another subject and needs another thread. And I really don't think people pray as often as is claimed here, but even if they do that's not the subject I'm pursuing.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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Message 18 of 80 (862442)
09-05-2019 9:52 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by dwise1
09-05-2019 3:47 AM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
Very simple case of being impressed with the couple of instances I described, no ulterior motives, not interested in proving anything statistical, not interested in how representative they are of the whole range of prayer experiences, just thought the cases were interesting in themselves and wanted to see if I could collect more of them. I also have the simpleminded aim of encouraging people to pray in difficult situations, and being simpleminded I forgot everything I say is going to be challenged.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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Message 23 of 80 (862512)
09-05-2019 8:19 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by dwise1
09-05-2019 4:07 PM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
I have very few examples, I expect to have very few examples. Is that what you want me to say?

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Faith 
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Message 26 of 80 (862526)
09-06-2019 3:21 AM


Not quite the right kind of example but I like it
Another instance on Forensic Files though it's not a clear one at all. Man convicted of raping and murdering a young woman confessed to it and keeps confessing to it when asked but eventually says he had been scared into confessing by threats from his interrogators and seeks the help of an organization to prove his innocence. In this process he describes himself as praying to God to help him get out of this mess he's gotten himself into.

Some time later, no indication how long, another prisoner has a "spiritual awakening," becomes a Christian and confesses to the crime. The first man had been convicted partly from forensic evidence so all that had to be reviewed and errors were found and corrected. Finally after twelve years he goes free and the man who had become a Christian accepts his guilt. Not at all a clearcut case of answered prayer but it's about believers in God and the truth finally coming out so justice could be done.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


  
Faith 
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Message 29 of 80 (862573)
09-06-2019 4:50 PM
Reply to: Message 27 by ringo
09-06-2019 11:58 AM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
There are lots of miracle stories from 9/11, people who didn't go to the tower that day by some fluke, people who got out miraculously, people who got saved that day, a woman who in retrospect is sure it was an angel who helped her get out. I don't remember stories about prayer, but I do remember a lot of miracle stories.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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From: Nevada, USA
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Message 31 of 80 (862576)
09-06-2019 9:46 PM
Reply to: Message 30 by Theodoric
09-06-2019 6:59 PM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
They may or may not have believed. There are no guarantees. Sometimes prayers do go unanswered. We don't know why. I just want to report the ones that got answered. Maybe because they make me happy.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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Message 33 of 80 (862579)
09-06-2019 10:50 PM
Reply to: Message 32 by ramoss
09-06-2019 10:42 PM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
Actually it sticks out in their mind usually because of odd circumstances that suggest something out of the ordinary. Some unusual event that prevented a person from going to work for instance.

The woman who believes she was helped by an angel remembers a man she encountered on her way down the stairs, an ordinary man dressed in ordinary clothes, who directed her through a door as he held it open for her, smiled at her and assured her she was going to be OK with a sense of certainty that impressed her. Doesn't sound like your ordinary scared human being to me. But you can dismiss anything if you want to.

Wanna hear another angel story? Not from 9/11. Saskatchewan pastor Bill Scottish Last Name, soon after his experience of a big revival in his home church, found himself with his wife in a South American country that was completely unfamiliar to him. They were there for a conference on revivals and somehow didn't have the address of the place of the conference. They were in the airport when a man came up to them, bowed and offered them information about how to get where they were supposed to go. They got on a bus he indicated and just started riding still without knowing their destination. Eventually a man sitting behind them leaned forward and told them to get off at the next stop. They did and found themselves at the conference. I'll remember the guy's name eventually. His report of the whole revival experience is on You Tube and the story of the angels directing him is toward the end.

ABE: FOUND IT. Bill McLeod.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idA3fJlit4U
This is the first video, you have to get to the last video for the angel story.

I think this is the next part. I'm having a hard time putting the whole series together: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gv2dLRs0dV4&t=2127s

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001
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Message 35 of 80 (862583)
09-07-2019 6:16 AM
Reply to: Message 33 by Faith
09-06-2019 10:50 PM


May report on some revivals too
Revivals are interesting supernatural phenomena too. I listened to some of the Bill McLeod talk and was reminded of how the church got cleaned up before the revival proper happened. People who had been at odds with each other forgave each other and reconciled; people who had divorced reconciles and remarried.

When new people started getting saved the local police department got lots of them coming in confessing to crimes and making restitution where they could. The police chief said he wasn't a religious man himself but he knew the signs of a revival when he saw them.

A real revival is a work of God Himself, not something people decide to do. That's why people are actually changed by it.

Sometimes in revivals whole towns get cleaned up, morally changed overnight as it were.

At the same time there are usually also people who flee such phenomena as if their lives were threatened by it: no moral change for me, thank you. They feel the spiritual pull and get out of town. There are some here I can imagine might react that way.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


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Faith 
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Posts: 35298
From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001
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(1)
Message 48 of 80 (862611)
09-07-2019 3:55 PM
Reply to: Message 37 by ringo
09-07-2019 1:09 PM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
It's not at all like gambling because I'm not at all thinking about percentages and rates, how many prayers answered as opposed to how many not, how many miracles as opposed to how many not. If there's an incidence of one person being helped by an angel I just think that's interesting, I don't see any necessity to compare it to all the others who didn't encounter angels. If it snows on a day in July, why am I obliged to mention all the times it didn't?

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Faith 
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Posts: 35298
From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001
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(1)
Message 51 of 80 (862636)
09-08-2019 3:10 PM
Reply to: Message 50 by ringo
09-08-2019 2:18 PM


Re: Thread is for reporting answered prayers
The circumstances themselves tell me whether the prayer was answered and whether that really was an angel. I don't need statistics to tell me that.

Besides, God answers prayer through many ordinary means, and believers recognize as His answers what unbelievers would dismiss as coincidence or at least nothing out of the ordinary. There is no point in discussing this subject on that level since we have assumptions at such complete odds to each other you will be talking to those who already share your views and the same is true on the side of believers.


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