August 23, 2021
You probably have heard this story: July 28, 2013. Local celebrity Maine Mendoza posted a tweet: “Arjo cutie,” along with a crying emoji. The tweet was referring to a Filipino actor whom she was fangirling over at that time.
Seven years later, to the surprise of their fans and netizens, Maine and Arjo would become a real-life couple! Most people attributed this plot twist to the “law of attraction.”
(The next time you see tweets, memes, or captions containing the word “cutie” next to a random object or name [e.g., BTS merch cutie; concert ticket cutie; guy with long hair cutie], you know where the idea came from!)
What is the Law of Attraction?
The Law of Attraction is a New Age philosophy or belief that says our thoughts and words have power to attract either positive or negative experiences into our lives. In one way or another, you might have come across this philosophy during your conversations with people or while browsing the internet:
“What your mind can conceive, your body can achieve.”
“I will attract into my life everything I want and everything I need.”
“If you really want something, the Universe will conspire to help you achieve it.”
According to the proponents of this belief, we can harness the power of the “Universe” through the power of our thoughts in order to help us accomplish our plans, reach our dreams, or get what we want in life. We do this by manifesting our desires, visualizing our dreams, or voicing it out in order to attract it into our lives.
The Law of Attraction is just one of the various practices of the New Age Movement, an approach to spirituality that takes its root from astrology, Eastern religion, humanism, and even science fiction.
But if we take a closer look, what does it really teach and where does this ideology lead us into?
Sadly, even some Christians embrace this by taking some biblical truths, misinterpreting Scriptures, and mixing it with the principles of the law of attraction.
For example, some people take Matthew 7:7 as the Christian counterpart of this principle. “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”
This verse, however, does not teach us that we can force God into submission to our will through our persistence. The overall context of Jesus’ statement tells us that if we ask, seek, and knock according to God’s will and kingdom agenda, we are assured that our prayers are heard and will be answered.
The Law of Attraction may be offering hope and positivity, but it takes the God of the Bible out of the picture. It subverts God’s authority and puts the “Universe” in God’s place. It inverts God’s sovereignty and makes human beings the captain of their own ship, the god of their own destiny.
At its core, the Law of Attraction pushes the God of the Bible out of the picture and teaches us to trust in our own power to get the things we want. It resonates deeply with our fallen human nature whose desire is to control, manipulate, and have things go our own way.
What truth and guidance can we get from Scriptures in light of this false ideology?
On several occasions, the Bible tells us that the whole creation was created through and for Jesus. He is the reason everything exists. Paul emphasized this truth to the Christians in Colossae:
Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation, for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see—such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him. He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together.
Colossians 1:15–17 (NLT)
Not only did God create the universe through Jesus; all things continue to exist because He holds all things together and sustains all creation. The universe is not God. In fact, the universe serves to declare the glory of God (Psalm 19:1).
God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts, and no matter how hard we try, no amount of positive thoughts can ever manipulate God into doing things our way.
God is supreme. He determines the end from the beginning. As it is written, “Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” (Proverbs 19:21)
And now that you belong to Christ, you are the true children of Abraham. You are his heirs, and God’s promise to Abraham belongs to you.
Galatians 3:29 (NLT)
God’s promises to Abraham came to pass beyond his lifetime not through manipulation, but through a covenant relationship. In Christ, we receive the same blessing God gave to Abraham.
For us Christians, blessings and material prosperity are a mere bonus for the salvation that we have already received in Christ. Just like the eternal life we’ve received, these things are given to us by grace, by virtue of the covenant relationship that Jesus initiated with us on the cross.
Jesus invites us to come to God for our needs. He assures us that our heavenly Father desires to give good gifts to those who ask Him (Matthew 7:11). He is faithful to fulfill His promises and is eager to show us favor when we ask, seek, and knock.
The next time you’re praying for something, hold on to this truth:
And we are confident that he hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases him. And since we know he hears us when we make our requests, we also know that he will give us what we ask for.
1 John 5:14–15 (NLT)
Present to Him your needs, seek His will, and receive His answer with gratitude. No need to put “cutie” next to your prayer or post, because God will give what you ask for according to His will.