For I have five brothers; that he may testify to them, lest they also come into this place of torment. Abraham said to him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. (Luke 16:28-29)
Some of us receive messages from God throughout our lives; many with more frequency than others could imagine. We are thought by some to be a little crazy when we witness about these "messages". Let me assure you, they do occur and they are real - but they come to us through the power of the Holy Spirit.
I was taught as a child to pray to and for dead people. Maybe it was to comfort me in their absence, maybe it was out of ignorance on the part of the teacher (which would then bring into question all the teachings they taught). If you read John's entire account of the "Rich Man and Lazarus", it will put to rest those teachings.
Jesus tells us to pray only to the Father, through him! He sent the Holy Spirit to be with us as we walk the path laid before us. What more do we need? Why are we so obsessed with "knowing" our future? Why do some reach out for communication with the dead? What is it that we want them to tell us? And when we do believe that they have "spoken" to us, why is that not enough? (I so love it when the Lord turns on the light...)
Our loved ones are one of two places: heaven or hell - period. There's no middle ground, there's no "praying them into heaven from purgatory", they were either "known" or "not known" to God when they stood before him. There is no hope for them if they were not saved ~ but their life on earth should serve as a lesson to those left behind. Christ tells us, he begs us, he commands us to follow HIM - no one else! Satan's realm is on earth. His deceptive powers are greater (much greater and more cunning) than you could possibly imagine! The trickery he uses is sometimes so sweet and so tasty that we, too, bite into that apple. Trust in what Jesus has told us, trust in the Holy Spirit to lead you, because the antichrist is real, and he will tell you that he is the Christ...open your eyes and focus on the Word of God - then you will know!
2 John 1: 7-11 tells us this: "For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have worked, but that we receive a full reward. Whoever transgresses, and stays not in the doctrine of Christ, has not God. He that stays in the doctrine of Christ, he has both the Father and the Son. If there come any to you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that bids him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds."