Praying for Miley Cyrus. Will you?

August 28, 2013

Much has been made of Miley’s twerking on the MTV VMAs. Like belly buttons, we all also have opinions, and we have expressed them. Then I read a comment at one of our posts yesterday, and it hit me like the proverbial ton of bricks. Initially, I responded on that page. But that didn’t seem like enough. I sensed the conviction to do more. So, I tweeted and made a hashtag, #Pray4Miley. And that didn’t seem like enough. So, here I am again, making a new post at the blog in hopes of starting a prayer concert to move the hand of God. Here is the comment I made at the post ‘Will the real Church Ladies Please Stand Up…?’

A prophetic voice and perspective — those are good things. They are godly things. But so is persistent prayer.
Max’s words remind me that I should have as much or more fervor for praying for Miley as I have invested in my disgust for her actions. For all who have just read my words, I challenge you to stop and breathe a prayer for Miley and her family. What if we were to read in a month that Miley left her current ways and returned to Christ? What if we prayed that God would call his child back to His side (I say child b/c of the WikiP report that she attended/was baptized in an SBC church — taking for granted her conversion).

Dear Heavenly Father:
Help me not to be so judgmental that your compassion that lives in me is overshadowed — is stunted — is snuffed. We are hurt by any believers who so profane their witness. Help me to balance rightful disgust with righteous dialog in prayer. I ask in Jesus’ name that you would intervene in Miley’s life. I pray that you would love her back to your will and ways. What a powerful witness she could be, Lord, to the millions who appreciated Hannah Montana, and to those who revel in her activities of late. Help my heart, Lord, and help Miley’s, too. I ask in the strong and saving name of your son, Jesus Christ, Amen.

Will you pray for Miley?

If you will pray for Miley, let us know of your commitment to do so. Also, post a link to this on your FB page. TWEET that you, too, are praying for Miley, and include the hashtag, #Pray4Miley.

Feel free to write your prayer here in a comment. Who knows? Miley may even read it.

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Johnathan Pritchett

Amen.

Disgust must be tempered with compassion and prayer for restoration. This is a good reminder to keep the main thing the main thing, and the main thing is not our indignation, however valid, but for Miley’s soul.

    Norm Miller

    Well put, brother. Indignation must be balanced with intercession — and sometimes supplemented with intervention.

Ken Hamrick

Miley who? Since we are not of the world, then our focus should not be on the world’s celebrities. Nothing they do is newsworthy in the Kingdom of God. Why must Christian media be peppered with discussion of which famous sinner is getting married or divorced, or what they are naming their baby, or how raunchy their latest performance was? Praying for the world’s celebrities by name sounds ostensibly good, but it feeds into a focus on the supposedly glamorous things of the world. Have you ever stopped to wonder why we’re watching every move of such people with rapt attention, just as the world does?

    Norm Miller

    Miley who?
    Miley Cyrus. Her last name is in the blog post title.

    Since we are not of the world, then our focus should not be on the world’s celebrities.
    We are supposed to be “in the world” and should praying for the salvation or the renewal of others is part of being salt and light in the world. Also, SBCToday is not as focused as you suggest. Were we focusing on such things, we would have been first to opine.

    Nothing they do is newsworthy in the Kingdom of God.
    Well, it is. Their actions provide sermonic illustrations and prayer opportunities.

    Why must Christian media be peppered with discussion of which famous sinner is getting married or divorced, or what they are naming their baby, or how raunchy their latest performance was?
    SBCToday is not so “peppered” as you suggest. But perhaps it should be if that would lead to praying for others more frequently and effectively.

    Praying for the world’s celebrities by name sounds ostensibly good, but it feeds into a focus on the supposedly glamorous things of the world.
    Praying for anyone is good, not just ostensibly good. Praying is a focus on spiritual matters. The discerning believer is able to distinguish between glamor and godliness, or the lack thereof. A believer discerning enough to pray for such a person demonstrates by that prayer that their focus is on God’s will and not the antics of the ungodly.

    Have you ever stopped to wonder why we’re watching every move of such people with rapt attention, just as the world does?

    Rapt attention? And as the world does? I hope our focus is on Jesus and the Word of God. Therein we find examples of compassion for prostitutes, tax collectors, and a host of other sinners who needed prayer. Will we ignore the example of Jesus and hang out only with church people?

    James 5.16 “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.”

    Ephesians 6.18 “Praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints.”

    1 Timothy 2.1 “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people”

    Colossians 1.9 “And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding.”

    Philippians 4.6 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”

      Johnathan Pritchett

      Cosign. Well said.

      Ken Hamrick

      Norm Miller,

      You said, among other things, “I hope our focus is on Jesus and the Word of God. Therein we find examples of compassion for prostitutes, tax collectors, and a host of other sinners who needed prayer.”

      Agreed. And there are billions who need such prayer. But we don’t pray for them all by name, do we? We tend to pray by name for those who are in our lives, in one way or another. It’s quite natural for believers to want to pray for those who occupy so much of our interest, our time and our lives. It just seems to me that Christian media as a whole (and not SBC Today in particular) acts as infatuated as the world is with their celebrities, and this has to reflect on the Church as a whole. We seem to be interested in everything that these people do. When two of them named their baby “North West,” it became the talking point for two hours one morning on the local contemporary Christian radio station. Maybe you’re right and I’m just overreacting; but if our head is in Hollywood, can our heart be far from it?

        Norm

        Ken: I don’t know a billion names, but I have prayed for people groups by name. I don’t know Obama personally, but I have prayed for him and other legislators by name. Sometimes I am impressed to pray for someone on the news, and I don’t know them, either. I have siblings in Christ who have these prayer urges, too. So, while I do tend to pray for those in my life, I also pray for others who are not.
        And I am not seeing all the Christian media fascination with celebs that you do.
        What impressed me was that the few blogs I read, almost none suggested praying for Miley. I believe God put her on my heart, and also encouraged me not to be critical of godless actions unless I also would pray for the one committing them.
        While I have not yet checked the hashtag count, I must say I am disappointed that more people did not respond positively at the blog — and not for my sake, but for Miley’s.

          Max

          “While I have not yet checked the hashtag count, I must say I am disappointed that more people did not respond positively …”

          Norm: This is but a small example of the great disinterest in prayer I am seeing across SBC life. The kind of prayer that you have called for here is motivated by a burden … unfortunately, the church appears to have largely lost its burden. We’ve allowed religious noise to deafen our ears. Do we no longer see the masses walking on the brim of hell, lost and undone without Christ? Can we not hear the cry of a wayward child struggling in the darkness?

          I’ve seen your mug shot – like me, you’ve been around for a while – so you probably remember when Southern Baptist churches used to have prayer meetings where the saints lingered in intercession. To keep things moving on our busy agendas, “prayer” is now confined to rigid time-slots and saints are directed to the next spot on the program. Sadder still, many prayer meetings in SBC churches have been canceled for lack of interest. Oh, they turn out for chicken dinners, contentious business meetings, and theological debates … but not to intercede.

          But be encouraged Brother – God saw your hashtag for Miley, took note of your burden, and heard your cry.

          P.S. I’m praying for a new leadership within SBC who will soon call for a solemn assembly across the convention. The greatest need of the hour is not to propose resolutions and cast ballots, but to pray. These are days to humble ourselves, pray, repent, turn from our wicked ways and seek His face. Will we?

            Norm Miller

            Thank you, Max. I am encouraged by my actions, because I obeyed. My disappointment may actually be pity for those who opted not to join a public effort to pray for Miley. Of course, then, I must acknowledge that God may not have moved people to go public, and thousands are praying for the young woman.
            Dr. Willingham and I will endorse your call for a national, solemn assembly. The good Doc has been praying for decades that God would send a 3rd Great Awakening. Whereas I understand what Doctor Jim means, I posit that we are not asleep; rather, we are in the wrong bed, being unfaithful to do what God has called us to do!
            I recently heard Wednesday night activities called an “Organ Recital.”
            Music? No.
            “Please pray for Aunt Sally’s liver, Uncle Joe’s heart, Cousin Ralph’s kidneys….”

Max

Thanks Norm – Praying for Miley is the right thing to do. As a professed Christian in one of our SBC churches, she may have wandered too far afield but God has not forsaken her. His mercies are new each morning – His love is everlasting. Sadly, the entertainment industry is populated by several musicians/singers who got their start in church – many others have drifted from the fold. Ms. Cyrus is not the first Baptist girl who has been ensnared by the lure of fame and fortune (I won’t name them here). Sometimes, we just get off course in this old world – doing the expected thing, but not the right thing – and end up using our talents for the enemy. I think of Lot who began a progressive journey into darkness by first looking toward Sodom. We find him next camped out in the hills overlooking Sodom … then in the gates of Sodom … and finally living in that wicked city. He was delivered when his friends interceded for him. I have to believe those godly ladies at Miley’s church (of the sort we talked about on Johnathan’s post) have been praying for her with broken hearts, as you have exhorted us to do. I pray that forgiving Savior and penitent sinner will meet again someday.

    Norm Miller

    Thx, Max. Whitney Houston was one who get her start in the church. Rhetorically, would prayers for her have made a difference?

Donald Hightower

Yes, we should pray for her. In the case of Whitney Houston, she was surrounded by professing christian. Did they ever admonish her? Challenge her? Also, the Cyrus’, The Simpsons’, and the Spears’ all are supposedly from a Christian background. And the Spears’ are supposedly from an SBC background. It’s true they need prayer. And I think there is a rich application from 1 Chronicles 12:32 – We need men today that understand our times. Which I believe would be to cry out to God for the lost. Whether it is a celebrity or a bag boy at the grocery store. Yes, I’m with you and will pray. Love the scriptures you included!

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