I echo what one person posted in a forum. “When I’m asked to pray in front of people, I find that my prayer is completely unnatural and insincere (sort of like how I talk when I’m giving a speech). I find when I pray [in public] that my focus is on being ‘seen [by] men’ (not intentionally) even though it’s my only wish to speak with God and Him alone. I guess that’s just who I am. In general, I’m uncomfortable speaking in front of people, thus I’m uncomfortable praying in front of them. It throws the sincerity and everything off.” I hate being fake so no. I don’t want to offer God an insincere prayer either. It’s not that I can’t think of words to say. Believe me I can try faking it and make it sound oh so annointed but my heart won’t be in the right place. So tell me, do you want me to sin just to fulfill a socially accepted norm?
While I love to pray, I enjoy writing them. I pray, yes. I pray for others, yes. I speak to God in tongues at times, yes. Do I agree that there is some benefit to hearing or saying prayer aloud? Yes. But I also believe that it’s extremely counterproductive to force it on someone who feels uncomfortable and who expresses himself differently. It can cause distress, trauma, and guilt. More than anything, prayer shouldn’t be an unpleasant experience. Whoever wants to lead the prayer aloud, let him lead. Extroverts might want to since they enjoy that kind of thing. Leave introverts like me to express ourselves in our own personal way. I’m secure enough in the Lord to know that choosing not to pray aloud doesn’t make me any less of a Christian. And I won’t let anyone impose it on me as if it’s otherwise.