Free In Christ

Finding Freedom in the Churches of Christ

From The Archives: Should We Say “Amen” To Close A Prayer?

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[This post is from April 16, 2009.  It may seem insignificant that we would close a prayer with the word “amen”, but maybe not]

I have been off of the practice of saying the “Amen” at the end of my prayers for some time now and I think it helps me enormously.  “Amen” originally meant “YES!” or “I Agree” but today, for many of us, it has come to mean “goodbye”.  It has become a way for us to end conversations with God.

I realized that I didn’t want to end my conversation or my fellowship with God.  I have mentioned previously that I see prayer more as fellowship with God than talking to God and this is part of it.  When I say “Amen” I immediatly lose the awareness of His prescence.  It’s almost like God has left because my spirit doesn’t feel Him anymore.  I don’t want this to happen, so I don’t say “Amen” to close a prayer.

I will admit that I still say “Amen” on the rare occasion that I offer a public prayer.  If I didn’t, people wouldn’t know when the prayer was over.  This is futher proof, though, that in today’s world “Amen” means “goodbye”.  We are saying “goodbye” to God and that the prayer is over.  This is not what “Amen” is supposed to mean.

I don’t know if the traditon of saying “Amen” will ever change in regards to public prayers (I honestly can’t think of a better way of ending one) but I hope that we will allow our personal prayers to be a continual reminder of God’s prescence in our lives.

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Written by freeinchrist

May 1, 2010 at 8:00 am

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