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Street smart boy is spirit-wise about prayer
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Taylor Field is the pastor and director of the inner-city ministries of East Seventh Baptist Church in New York City, also known as the “Graffiti Church.” In his book “Mercy Streets,” Field tells about a street-wise boy in New York City who went to Sunday School. The lesson was about prayer.

This city kid was stunned. “You mean,” he said, “that I don’t even have to say a prayer out loud, that God knows what I am thinking? That He even knows what is in my head even if I don’t say it with my mouth?”

The teacher gladly agreed and was pleased that he understood. But the little fellow was following his statement to its logical conclusion. He exclaimed, “Boy, am I in trouble!” (Taylor Field, “Mercy Streets: Seeing Grace on the Streets of New York.” Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2003, p. 19.)

That street-wise boy was more spirit-wise than many adults. The Bible says, “The Lord knows man’s thoughts” (Psalm 94:11, HCSB), and tells us there will be “a day when God judges what people have kept secret.” If we stopped reading the verse right there, we would all be in trouble. But the rest of the verse says, “according to my gospel through Christ Jesus.” (Romans 2:16, HCSB).

You see, “the gospel” means “good news.” And the good news is that Christ Jesus died on the cross to pay for our sins, even the secret ones that we are ashamed to reveal. If we trust in His death on the cross for our sins, He will enter our hearts and forgive us (and begin cleaning up those secret thoughts.)

Boy, am I glad I did that and got out of trouble!

Copyright 2008 by Bob Rogers. Read this column each Thursday for a mix of religion and humor. You can read more “Holy Humor” on the Web page of First Baptist Church of Rincon at