The things that land in my mailbox all too frequently? Legitimate appeals for benevolence and contributions are one thing. But the repetitious NRA Member Renewal notices sent about every six weeks throughout the year, way too many Medicare supplement and life insurance company offers, and so on, are another. It’s mostly junk though, as almost all important items I receive by e-mail or while conducting business online.

But a “Prayer Rug”? Owing to my prior experiences as a prison chaplain, I immediately associated that with the Islamic faith. Taking further notice, I saw that some church body naming Jesus had sent this “prayer rug”, a rug in a #10 envelope?

So I opened it. Of course, it was not a rug at all. This rug was a folded piece of decorative paper, printed   with the expected appeal for money on one side and a trick image of Jesus on the other. The Jesus image’s eyes seemed to shift their gaze toward the reader or upward toward heaven. You need to use your imagination to see some sort of rug.

So the recipient is instructed, no, mandated to kneel on it for a specified period of time, and that the recipient must perform the ritual TONIGHT ONLY!! I gather that they mean upon receipt, that evening, or the method won’t work. It reminds of the obnoxious salesman belaboring the prospective buyer with, “Ya gotta buy NOW!”.

Then came the pitches. Oh Yeah, one woman received tens of thousands of dollars following this agenda to the letter, but TONIGHT ONLY! I am to place the rug before me on the floor or a chair, pray for an outcome desired, and for two other persons to whom I am to forward the rug and my prayers for them. The hitch is that I am to return it to their church, not the two people, with a ‘suggested offering’, of course. Then the church forwards it to the two parties whom I identified, after they also pray for them, and me… If, and only if, I followed the instructions to the letter, then I will receive the blessedness I specified via my petition and so will the people I listed on the return side of the ‘rug’. Or was it the ‘form’?

The so-called prayer rug was the stereotypical combination chain letter and promises of blessing beyond my imagination ($$$$$) if I followed the directions in lock step manner and sent in a ‘seed offering’ for them to ‘sow’ in my behalf. And of course their church operates ministries everywhere on the planet. But they listed none.

And I found none. A quick Google search reveals their ‘church’ to be a mail-in church only, having more controversy than substance. Such wretchedly corrupted individuals prey on the ignorant and the lonely, along with those who this ‘church’ deceives into believing that the material blessings of the deity can be purchased, or earned by a sort of prayer-on-demand. Take careful note that this mail fraud in the name of Jesus is not confined to mail. And such appeals regularly utilize the language of ‘sowing seed’ before the petitioner may ‘reap a harvest’. The falsely deemed inspirational televangelists, the megachurches and the faith healers all follow this same pattern of promising material prosperity and blessedness on the pattern of the Law of Attraction, self-help religion that knows nothing of a Cross.

I doubt that any of them had to deal with the aftermath, the consequences to the shattered faith of the preyed upon, the defrauded, and in some cases their increased poverty as penalty for believing in a false prophet’s testimony of the prosperity the the Lord wants them to have… That is, if they’ll only pray this prayer on this ‘rug’, TONIGHT ONLY!

Don’t the words of Jesus come to mind, yes, directed at the money-changers in the Temple precincts as He had that whip of cords in His hand… You who make the Father’s house a house of merchandise and profiteering, beware…

Father David+

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.