->'''Guidance Counsellor:''' Dwicky, you really believe in aliens?\\
'''Dwicky:''' Ha ha, not any more! All the childlike wonder was ripped from my heart the day my foot was stuck in an escalator, and aliens ''didn't'' come rescue me.
-->-- ''WesternAnimation/InvaderZim'': Vindicated

Bob is in a crisis, so he turns to {{God}}, gods, CrystalDragonJesus, aliens, or JustForFun/TropeTan for aid but laces it with an ultimatum. Bob will be the bestest follower and prophet of his/her/its/their greatness if they'll just come through with this one teeny-tiny miracle. If they don't? Well then he'll have empirical proof of the absence or [[JerkassGod jerkassness of God]], and will convert to another religion or become a HollywoodAtheist or NayTheist.

This gets very thorny very quickly as Bob's miracle will probably fail to manifest. Did he not [[ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve pray]] hard [[GodsNeedPrayerBadly enough]]? Was he ignored? [[HaveYouSeenMyGod Is God even there?]] In his game of '''Religious Russian Roulette''', Bob just pulled the trigger on the loaded chamber of gnostic [[note]]Feeling certain of God's (non)existence.[[/note]] a/theism. He may even claim "EvilStoleMyFaith."

If the PowersThatBe didn't come through for him, why would they do so for anyone else? This nice little angry depression will last right up until a left field miracle kicks in. It is MaybeMagicMaybeMundane, but Bob now has something spiritual to chew on. Typically, any non-answer from the PowersThatBe is chalked up to Bob asking for the wrong thing or for the wrong reason, such as selfish or hurtful wishes or expecting God to out and out prove His existence on demand.

If it's anything like a ComicBook/ChickTract, the appearance of [[DeusExMachina a true miracle (on demand, no less!)]] will [[EasyEvangelism instantly convert]] Bob to whatever religion the author wants. In works where the existence of God and the Devil are established facts, this situation is often caused because either GodIsEvil, [[JerkassGod a Jerkass]], [[GodIsInept inept]], or [[GodIsFlawed simply flawed]]. At the very least, it's a case for GodAndSatanAreBothJerks.

See also: SmiteMeOhMightySmiter, CrisisOfFaith, InMysteriousWays, and EgocentricallyReligious.



[[folder: Film ]]

* In ''Film/MajorLeague'', Pedro Cerrano is a practitioner of voodoo, worshiping the spirit Jabu. In his last at bat, Pedro tells Jabu that if he can't hit this curve, he won't believe in him anymore. After two strikes, he decides to abandon him anyway. "I say 'Fuck you.' I do it myself." He hits it, it's a homer, and by the sequel he's converted to Buddhism. It's also implied that this is how he came to worship Jabu in the first place; when a teammate talks to him about Christianity, Pedro remarks that he likes Jesus very much -- but he never helped him hit breaking balls.
* ''Film/ConanTheBarbarian1982'': Conan, rather than giving Crom an ultimatum, simply says, "To Hell with you! I'll do it myself." And it pays off; when Conan is about to be struck down, a vision of Valeria appears so he can finish the battle. Probably the most accurate part of the movie: Crom, being the war-god of a ProudWarriorRace, has no time to aid weaklings who cannot overcome their challenges alone.
* ''Film/TheGrey'' has a scene in which the main character (lost in the Alaskan wilderness after a plane crash, with the likelihood of starving / freezing to death very close, and with his fellow survivors having already been killed by the wolf pack that's still stalking him) has a RageAgainstTheHeavens moment where he tells God "Fuck faith, ''earn'' it!" and that he needs help ''now''. [[spoiler: Nothing happens. However, the ending scene has him surrounded by the wolf pack, but the alpha chooses to fight him in a one-on-one dominance fight, rather than having them all attack at once, giving him a fighting chance of survival (he's a seasoned soldier armed with a knife and improvised claw-knuckledusters). The ending is ambiguous about whether he survived the fight or not]].


[[folder: Jokes ]]

* A man is on the roof of his house as flood waters rise. A raft of people come by and offer to take him to safety. He declines, saying he has faith that God will rescue him. Next a rescue helicopter offers him a ladder, but he again declines. The waters continue to rise, and he drowns. At God's throne, the man asks why God didn't save him. God replies, "Seriously? [[InMysteriousWays I sent you a raft, I sent you a helicopter...]]"
* "Take prayer out of public schools? There will always be prayer in public schools as long as you have midterms!"[[note]]Only teacher-led prayer has ever been banned anyway. Students have always been to pray however they wish (teachers too, on their own).[[/note]]


[[folder: Literature ]]

* An unusual example in ''Literature/{{Mistborn}}'': After Sazed crosses the DespairEventHorizon, he loses his sense of generalized faith and starts going through the 200+ religions he knows about looking for one that he feels can offer a suitable explanation for everything wrong with the world. He winds up throwing out all of them for having logical flaws before eventually realizing it doesn't really work like that.
* ''Monte Cassino'' by Creator/SvenHassel mentions they "prayed to God and pledged their souls to Satan" during the constant artillery bombardment as the Allies try to smash the monastery.


[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* In ''Series/TheFactsOfLife'', Blair describes how this applies to her: she once prayed to God to stop her parents' divorce. He didn't, and she stopped believing in Him.
* Sergeant Major Williams does this in an episode of ''Series/ItAintHalfHotMum'' where he tried praying to Hare Krishna.
* Happens in an episode of ''Series/TheWestWing''. There is a murderer due to be executed in a matter of hours and it is within President Bartlett's power to commute his sentence to life in prison. Bartlett is a devout Roman Catholic and does not believe in the death penalty, but commuting a sentence when the criminal's guilt is beyond question would be very impolitic. Over the course of the episode, Toby talks with the President about the matter after speaking himself with his rabbi, Joey Lucas, a deaf Quaker, tells the President she is very much against it when she meets with him on an unrelated matter, and the President has a phone conversation with the Pope. None of these tilt the scales. Then he receives a visit from his longtime priest and friend who lays out that Jed knows in his heart that the death penalty is wrong and that God had sent him the message across as wide a religious spectrum as possible. But by then, the convict is dead and Jed sits down, dejected, to give his friend his confession.


[[folder: Newspaper Comics ]]

* ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes'':
** Calvin as he unsuccessfully begs for it to snow:
--> '''Calvin''': Do you want me to become an atheist?!
** {{Played with}} in another strip where Calvin, just before beaning Susie with a water balloon, prays for a sign that this would be wrong. No sign; he beans her and she beats him up. "How come the universe always gives you the sign '''after''' you do it?" In this case, he's hoping for a negative result, and the object of the experiment is objective morality rather than God, but otherwise the structure is the same.


[[folder: Religion and Mythology ]]

* This can sometimes be the impetus for real life turns to atheism. Something doesn't happen the way someone's religious belief suggests it would, and they start to doubt. However, rather than leave the person a bitter, god-hating shell, it's more likely to make the person more perceptive to atheists' reasons for disbelief. Sometimes it sticks. Other times, the religious person will end up renewing their faith. Either way the common end of this trope, being angry at God, is at most a temporary state if it happens at all. The person either returns to their faith, or stops believing, and why be angry at a non-existent deity? However, they may greatly dislike various gods as ''fictional'' entities.
* One common belief in Christianity is that this sort of thing - demanding an action from God in order to justify faith or prove himself real - is a sin, sometimes called "Tempting God". A RealLife example is AbusiveParents refusing medical treatment for their child because they expect God to heal them. The most common but extreme example to explain this to children would be jumping off a cliff and expecting God to catch you.
** Notably, this is exactly what Satan tries to convince Jesus to do during the second temptation. Jesus replies, "[Scripture] also says, 'You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'"
* For a specific in-[[Literature/TheBible Scripture]] example, look at the Literature/BookOfJob. God allowed a lot of crap to happen to Job even though the book explicitly states that Job didn't do anything to earn it-Satan was just trying to goad him into blaspheming by making him suffer. Job (without the blasphemy that Satan desired) spends most of the book lamenting that he didn't deserve his suffering-especially since his friends, on the grounds that suffering is the consequence of sin, argue that he ''did'' somehow deserve it-and working his way up to demanding answers as to why it happened. God eventually does intervene, but only to say "I'm God, you're not, who are ''you'' to make Me explain Myself?" Job then understands what he was doing and stops.


[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'':
** One of the many reasons people fall to Chaos. Despite the massive religious bureaucracy set up after his quasi-death, the GodEmperor of Man is still just a man, so when prayer to Him doesn't work, people tend to go with one of the other PhysicalGods of the setting. [[note]]Not that they'll save you either, but they're happy to [[GoMadFromTheRevelation drive you so mad that you don't care how doomed you are]].[[/note]]
** Khorne (one of the Chaos gods) does ''not'' take well to people who demand things of him without something to show for it, or even pray to him. Time spent praying is time not spent butchering enemies (or allies), spilling their blood so he may drink it.


[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'': Sokka spends an entire episode stuck in a shallow hole, bargaining with "Karma person or thing or whoever's in charge of this stuff!" If they agree to let him out, he'll agree to give up meat and sarcasm...