Prayer is often an argument of laziness: "Lord, my temper gives me a vast deal of inconvenience, and it would be a great task for me to correct it; and wilt thou be pleased to correct it for me, that I may get along easier?" If prayer was answered under such circumstances, independent of action of natural laws, it would be paying a premium on indolence.
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Source Notes: Lecture Room Talks: Answers to Prayers, in Beecher as a Humorist: Selections from the Published Works, ed. Eleanor Kirk (1887).
Henry Ward Beecher (June 24, 1813 - March 8, 1887) was a theologically liberal American Congregationalist clergyman and reformer, and author who was born in Litchfield, Connecticut, the eighth of nine children of Lyman Beecher by his first wife (and the eighth of thirteen children in all). One of his elder sisters was Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom's Cabin.
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