Friday, December 04, 2015

Prayer and Platitudes

There has recently been many memes on Facebook and Twitter that have mocked the prayers of those that have called for prayer for the victims of the most recent mass shooting in the US.

I have a problem with that -- sort of.

The problem I have is that I don't think that prayer is something to be mocked. I do believe that it is our way of communicating with God and I do believe that he hears our prayers. Often, when we are helpless to do anything else, prayer serves as our only means of doing something to offer comfort or aid to those in need.

And that's where the "sort of" comes in.

The "thoughts and prayers" comments that are quoted and shared are often by people that are in the position of being able to do something -- but don't. The frustration of those that are angry and hurting (and afraid of the continuing trend) is what is being shared in those memes.

Growing up, I remember one of the nuns at my Catholic school saying that we should pray like it all depends on God, but work like it all depends on us.
While I do often expect God to intervene in ways that only God can, it is unfair of us to expect God to do the things that He has clearly placed in our power and ability. We should pray for the comfort of the victims of any tragedy, especially when we are unable to lend comfort ourselves. But if we have the means to prevent (or at least reduce) further acts of gun violence (in this case), shouldn't we be taking steps in that direction?

I don't have the answers.
I do know that I don't want my home to be a country where gun violence is considered normal.
There are people that are way smarter than me that are tasked with coming up with solutions. Many of them spend millions of other people's dollars to be in the position of doing something -- and they do nothing, but offer platitudes.

When it comes to what I can do -- I vote.
You should, too.

When I am lost and don't know what to do -- I pray.
You should, too.

John <><

1 comment:

Mike said...

"-- but don't."