I have been giving a lot of time and thought these days to my own ego and sense of worth. It seems that we all strive to strike a balance between who we think we are, who we project ourselves as, and who we actually are. The closer the first two are to the third idea, the centered our personality becomes.
I am, of course, assuming I know what I am talking about. But as I write this, I can sense the three aspects of my ego (read: personality) working their way into this post.
Now - on to religion. The proper belief and adherence to xianity hinges on the surrender of ego. This would mean dropping any assumption of what the individual thinks they know of their gtod and meditating on what they cannot comprehend. God is meant to be beyond good and evil - to assume that 'god is good' to to assume that one knows god, who is by definition unknowable. So I would assume that praying to god to win a contest or 'give me strength' is a rather heretic view of God.
Now, I believe in God, but I am neither xian, Jew, Muslim, or any other believer type. I believe that God exists only because I recognize that I cannot possibly know everything (but I know what I know what I know.) I don't believe that God loves me or those things to which I prefer. Neither does God dislike those things I feel are to be disliked. God is, in effect, the unknowable. God is not knowledge per se - God is the act of learning and gaining knowledge. To that respect, there is no deity that need be acknowledged.
Okay - rant over!