1. How I play golf, I can't tell you how many times I have hit a tree and my golf ball has come back to rest in the fairway or on a green. Predictably I hear "That's not fair, we have 2 opponents today, the preacher, and God." My response? "Out here it is a greater advantage to be an atheist with a smooth swing than to be a pastor who cannot remember to keep his head still." 2. Winning the Lottery, Do not waste your time praying for God to give you the winning numbers for your quick pick. Even a promise that you will tithe from your winnings will not sway the almighty. God cares nothing about how much money you have but is very interested in how you use the money you have. If you believe in God then invest in the almighty, not your chance for mega millions.
3. Parking Spaces, This is the one that I just don't understand. We use up our moments of potential intimacy with God on prayers for a desirable parking space because we are in a hurry. Maybe we could redirect our prayer and ask God to help us with time management our lives would be transformed.
4. Victory for your favorite football team; Tough to reconcile the prayers "Lord, give us victory tonight and protect our athletes from injury." with the obvious answer from God "Well, if you really want victory then practice, practice, and practice during the week. If you really want protection, give them helmets that will prevent concussions and tell the coaches to quit teaching kids how to cut block without getting caught for a penalty."
5. How eloquent your words are when you pray; Just pray. Open your heart, tell God what scares you, what makes your heart sing, and where you have seen God at work in the world that day. Just have a conversation with regular words, not church words. Say your peace and then listen to what God is trying to say to you.