Thoughts and Prayers

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Cleon
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Thoughts and Prayers

Post by Cleon » Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:59 am

I've noticed a recent trend: The attack on "thoughts and prayers". Look at any number of news articles about a disastrous event and you're likely to see someone put down the idea of prayer as being effectual in any real sense. It bothers me. I have been taught that prayer brings a person into a closer relationship to God and therefore you become more like Him. You change and that changes what you do and therefore changes events in the world. That's not to discount the supernatural or the miraculous, but rather that prayer is an ordinary means to change things.

Have any of you noticed this attack on prayer too?
Does prayer change you?
How do you address people that belittle the power of prayer?
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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by UncleBob » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am

From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
"One man's theology is another man's belly laugh." - Robert A. Heinlein

"Many of the points here, taken to their logical conclusions, don't hold up to logic; they're simply Godded-up ways of saying "I don't like that." - Skip

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by Hovannes » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:40 am

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
Because power trumps prayers and power must manifest it's self in the State, according to the political scheme.
Mark Schiffman, Chair of the Dept. of Humanities at Villanova nailed this in
Political Life and the Horizon of the Human: Polis, Church and State, and Totalitarianism

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by FredS » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:47 am

Yes, I've noticed it too. Particularly after the recent mass murders at the concert in Vegas and the school in Florida. And particularly to mock politicians who don't immediatly call for more gun laws, but send their 'thoughts and prayers' to the victims. The mocking is obviously from folks who don't believe that prayer is effectual. To them, they're just hollow words. Like a wiccan casting a spell, it's all silly voodoo to unbeleivers, so they mock.

But to a believer, prayer is the most effective thing to do. That doesn't mean we throw our hands in the air and do nothing to bring about change in our communities, it's simply an acknowledgment that we can't fix every broken thing on our own.
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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by UncleBob » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:48 am

Hovannes wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:40 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
Because power trumps prayers and power must manifest it's self in the State, according to the political scheme.
Mark Schiffman, Chair of the Dept. of Humanities at Villanova nailed this in
Political Life and the Horizon of the Human: Polis, Church and State, and Totalitarianism
I was thinking more along James 2:14-17:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace; stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it is not complemented by action, is dead.
But, hey! You do you.
"One man's theology is another man's belly laugh." - Robert A. Heinlein

"Many of the points here, taken to their logical conclusions, don't hold up to logic; they're simply Godded-up ways of saying "I don't like that." - Skip

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by Cleon » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
I think just about everyone who would say they are praying really means it. And if they're praying and prayer is effectual, action will happen.

One good thing about prayer is that it slows people down and helps them not to go off willy nilly and do things without considering the full force of their actions and what the consequences might be. Could it be that we live in a time of impatience and people want to see instant results? Act now, pray later?

Maybe it's that I think prayer is primary. It just grates me when I hear people say, "enough with the thoughts and prayers". IMO, there can never be enough prayer. The phrase Ora et labora comes to mind. Don't know why. I'm not old school Latin Rite. :lol:
Last edited by Cleon on Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by UncleBob » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am

Cleon wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
I think just about everyone who would say they are praying really means it. And if they're praying and prayer is effectual, action will happen.

One good thing about prayer is that it slows people down and helps them not to go off willy nilly and do things without considering the full force of their actions and what the consequences might be. Could it be that we live in a time of impatience and people want to see instant results? Act now, pray later?

Maybe it's that I think prayer is primary. It just grates me when I hear people say, "enough with the thoughts and prayers". IMO, there can never be enough prayer. The phrase Ora et labora comes to mind.
Or it is an excuse to not act.
"One man's theology is another man's belly laugh." - Robert A. Heinlein

"Many of the points here, taken to their logical conclusions, don't hold up to logic; they're simply Godded-up ways of saying "I don't like that." - Skip

"You guys are weird." - Mrs. FredS

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by Cleon » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:50 am

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
Cleon wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
I think just about everyone who would say they are praying really means it. And if they're praying and prayer is effectual, action will happen.

One good thing about prayer is that it slows people down and helps them not to go off willy nilly and do things without considering the full force of their actions and what the consequences might be. Could it be that we live in a time of impatience and people want to see instant results? Act now, pray later?

Maybe it's that I think prayer is primary. It just grates me when I hear people say, "enough with the thoughts and prayers". IMO, there can never be enough prayer. The phrase Ora et labora comes to mind.
Or it is an excuse to not act.
Could be. But why not give people the benefit of the doubt?
"Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven" - Jesus

"More people need to put their big boy britches on." - JMG

"Dang, a pipe slap." - JimVH

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by UncleBob » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:52 am

Cleon wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:50 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
Cleon wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
I think just about everyone who would say they are praying really means it. And if they're praying and prayer is effectual, action will happen.

One good thing about prayer is that it slows people down and helps them not to go off willy nilly and do things without considering the full force of their actions and what the consequences might be. Could it be that we live in a time of impatience and people want to see instant results? Act now, pray later?

Maybe it's that I think prayer is primary. It just grates me when I hear people say, "enough with the thoughts and prayers". IMO, there can never be enough prayer. The phrase Ora et labora comes to mind.
Or it is an excuse to not act.
Could be. But why not give people the benefit of the doubt?
Because they (the politicians) are in a position to do something about it. They can act. And these things happen all the time--its not rare.
"One man's theology is another man's belly laugh." - Robert A. Heinlein

"Many of the points here, taken to their logical conclusions, don't hold up to logic; they're simply Godded-up ways of saying "I don't like that." - Skip

"You guys are weird." - Mrs. FredS

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by Jester » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:54 am

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
Cleon wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
I think just about everyone who would say they are praying really means it. And if they're praying and prayer is effectual, action will happen.

One good thing about prayer is that it slows people down and helps them not to go off willy nilly and do things without considering the full force of their actions and what the consequences might be. Could it be that we live in a time of impatience and people want to see instant results? Act now, pray later?

Maybe it's that I think prayer is primary. It just grates me when I hear people say, "enough with the thoughts and prayers". IMO, there can never be enough prayer. The phrase Ora et labora comes to mind.
Or it is an excuse to not act.
What should they do?
I smoke a cigar because the body is a temple and the temple needs incense. -Michael Knowles

Pumpkin Ale is more American than apple pie! -Tuttle

When chaos manifests itself, what makes you think that anyone tame will be good for anything? -Jordan B. Peterson

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by UncleBob » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:56 am

Jester wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:54 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
Cleon wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:18 am
From what I have seen, it is not an attack on prayer. It is an attack on trite sayings instead of action.
I think just about everyone who would say they are praying really means it. And if they're praying and prayer is effectual, action will happen.

One good thing about prayer is that it slows people down and helps them not to go off willy nilly and do things without considering the full force of their actions and what the consequences might be. Could it be that we live in a time of impatience and people want to see instant results? Act now, pray later?

Maybe it's that I think prayer is primary. It just grates me when I hear people say, "enough with the thoughts and prayers". IMO, there can never be enough prayer. The phrase Ora et labora comes to mind.
Or it is an excuse to not act.
What should they do?
That is politics.
"One man's theology is another man's belly laugh." - Robert A. Heinlein

"Many of the points here, taken to their logical conclusions, don't hold up to logic; they're simply Godded-up ways of saying "I don't like that." - Skip

"You guys are weird." - Mrs. FredS

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by FredS » Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:08 am

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:48 am
I was thinking more along James 2:14-17:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace; stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it is not complemented by action, is dead.
I was recalling exactly that verse with my previous post. Prayer doesn't allow us to throw our hands in the air and do nothing to bring about change in our communities, it's simply an acknowledgment that we can't fix every broken thing on our own. People who mock don't see action that may or may not be taking place, they just hear 'empty' words. I've heard more than a few legislators say that, if there was a law that would stop murder, they'd vote for it in a heartbeat. Who wouldn't? But so far, the thousands of laws against murder haven't stopped it.

Do you, Bob, think that prayer is more or less effective in changing the heart of your unbelieving neighbor than civil laws?
"If we ever get to heaven boys, it aint because we aint done nothin' wrong" - Kris Kristofferson

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by UncleBob » Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:12 am

FredS wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:08 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:48 am
I was thinking more along James 2:14-17:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace; stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it is not complemented by action, is dead.
I was recalling exactly that verse with my previous post. Prayer does not absolve us from acting to protect others, but it does acknowledge that we can't fix every broken thing on our own. People who mock don't see action that may or may not be taking place, they just hear 'empty' words. I've heard more than a few legislators say that, if there was a law that would stop murder, they'd vote for it in a heartbeat. Who wouldn't? But so far, the thousands of laws against murder haven't stopped it.

Do you, Bob, think that prayer is more or less effective in changing the heart of your unbelieving neighbor than civil laws?
I think that prayer does not change God as much as it changes us: the pray-er. But when a politician says, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you" it seems to only be meant to placate because there is never any change in them.
"One man's theology is another man's belly laugh." - Robert A. Heinlein

"Many of the points here, taken to their logical conclusions, don't hold up to logic; they're simply Godded-up ways of saying "I don't like that." - Skip

"You guys are weird." - Mrs. FredS

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by FredS » Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:27 am

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:12 am
FredS wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:08 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:48 am
I was thinking more along James 2:14-17:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace; stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it is not complemented by action, is dead.
I was recalling exactly that verse with my previous post. Prayer does not absolve us from acting to protect others, but it does acknowledge that we can't fix every broken thing on our own. People who mock don't see action that may or may not be taking place, they just hear 'empty' words. I've heard more than a few legislators say that, if there was a law that would stop murder, they'd vote for it in a heartbeat. Who wouldn't? But so far, the thousands of laws against murder haven't stopped it.

Do you, Bob, think that prayer is more or less effective in changing the heart of your unbelieving neighbor than civil laws?
I think that prayer does not change God as much as it changes us: the pray-er. But when a politician says, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you" it seems to only be meant to placate because there is never any change in them.
I disagree on both counts. I think prayer can (maybe, sort of) bring about change external to me. And I think change always happens after mass murders. Metal detectors are installed. Laws against bump stocks are passed. Communities add counseling resources for students. Zero tolerance policies are put in place. Supplemental training courses for teachers are funded. Police presence is - at least temporarily - stepped up. Security locks and surveillance systems are bought and installed. I'm sure your thinking these bandaid solutions are ineffective and I certainly don't think they'll stop another broken kid from shooting up his school next month, but that was my point in the first place.

And, for fear of turning this political and running afoul of our rules, that's all I have to say 'bout that.
Last edited by FredS on Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:35 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by Jester » Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:31 am

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:12 am
FredS wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:08 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:48 am
I was thinking more along James 2:14-17:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace; stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it is not complemented by action, is dead.
I was recalling exactly that verse with my previous post. Prayer does not absolve us from acting to protect others, but it does acknowledge that we can't fix every broken thing on our own. People who mock don't see action that may or may not be taking place, they just hear 'empty' words. I've heard more than a few legislators say that, if there was a law that would stop murder, they'd vote for it in a heartbeat. Who wouldn't? But so far, the thousands of laws against murder haven't stopped it.

Do you, Bob, think that prayer is more or less effective in changing the heart of your unbelieving neighbor than civil laws?
I think that prayer does not change God as much as it changes us: the pray-er. But when a politician says, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you" it seems to only be meant to placate because there is never any change in them.
We cannot move the hand of God or sway him in any direction. He will act if it is in his will. Only we pray to conform ourselves to his will. We plea for comfort in the hearts of families. What madness and blissful ignorance in the heart of wicked men who scoff and mock because they demand God bow to their will. These men look at prayer and believe it to satisfy selfish desires. Of course they mock that prayer doesn't work. Their selfish prayers were never Gods will and were never granted. If it was answered they never recognized it. Instead they had their fill and chalked it up to coincidence.

Just be very careful when you mock a mans prayers when they are not for his own gain but the comfort of those he doesn't even know. To say a mans prayers mean less because he holds an office is a sin greater than the inaction of your will in policy.
I smoke a cigar because the body is a temple and the temple needs incense. -Michael Knowles

Pumpkin Ale is more American than apple pie! -Tuttle

When chaos manifests itself, what makes you think that anyone tame will be good for anything? -Jordan B. Peterson

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by UncleBob » Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:58 am

Jester wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:31 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:12 am
FredS wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:08 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:48 am
I was thinking more along James 2:14-17:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace; stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it is not complemented by action, is dead.
I was recalling exactly that verse with my previous post. Prayer does not absolve us from acting to protect others, but it does acknowledge that we can't fix every broken thing on our own. People who mock don't see action that may or may not be taking place, they just hear 'empty' words. I've heard more than a few legislators say that, if there was a law that would stop murder, they'd vote for it in a heartbeat. Who wouldn't? But so far, the thousands of laws against murder haven't stopped it.

Do you, Bob, think that prayer is more or less effective in changing the heart of your unbelieving neighbor than civil laws?
I think that prayer does not change God as much as it changes us: the pray-er. But when a politician says, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you" it seems to only be meant to placate because there is never any change in them.
We cannot move the hand of God or sway him in any direction. He will act if it is in his will. Only we pray to conform ourselves to his will. We plea for comfort in the hearts of families. What madness and blissful ignorance in the heart of wicked men who scoff and mock because they demand God bow to their will. These men look at prayer and believe it to satisfy selfish desires. Of course they mock that prayer doesn't work. Their selfish prayers were never Gods will and were never granted. If it was answered they never recognized it. Instead they had their fill and chalked it up to coincidence.

Just be very careful when you mock a mans prayers when they are not for his own gain but the comfort of those he doesn't even know. To say a mans prayers mean less because he holds an office is a sin greater than the inaction of your will in policy.
How long does it take for someone to pray for the comfort of victims before we hear God saying, "Well, dumba$$, that's why you are there. Get on it." That is the power of prayer where you are open to the will of God. It changes those who pray. Now, for those who "got it all right, now" there is little hope (whether saved or not) of change. After all, they are righteous, right? They know it all now, right? Why change perfection, right?

Of course there is also the cha-ching! of the political, but that is all something else.

In short, people are sick of hearing "I'll pray for you" when there are also things you can do about it.
"One man's theology is another man's belly laugh." - Robert A. Heinlein

"Many of the points here, taken to their logical conclusions, don't hold up to logic; they're simply Godded-up ways of saying "I don't like that." - Skip

"You guys are weird." - Mrs. FredS

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Re: Thoughts and Prayers

Post by Jester » Wed Feb 21, 2018 12:30 pm

UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:58 am
Jester wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:31 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:12 am
FredS wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:08 am
UncleBob wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:48 am
I was thinking more along James 2:14-17:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace; stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it is not complemented by action, is dead.
I was recalling exactly that verse with my previous post. Prayer does not absolve us from acting to protect others, but it does acknowledge that we can't fix every broken thing on our own. People who mock don't see action that may or may not be taking place, they just hear 'empty' words. I've heard more than a few legislators say that, if there was a law that would stop murder, they'd vote for it in a heartbeat. Who wouldn't? But so far, the thousands of laws against murder haven't stopped it.

Do you, Bob, think that prayer is more or less effective in changing the heart of your unbelieving neighbor than civil laws?
I think that prayer does not change God as much as it changes us: the pray-er. But when a politician says, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you" it seems to only be meant to placate because there is never any change in them.
We cannot move the hand of God or sway him in any direction. He will act if it is in his will. Only we pray to conform ourselves to his will. We plea for comfort in the hearts of families. What madness and blissful ignorance in the heart of wicked men who scoff and mock because they demand God bow to their will. These men look at prayer and believe it to satisfy selfish desires. Of course they mock that prayer doesn't work. Their selfish prayers were never Gods will and were never granted. If it was answered they never recognized it. Instead they had their fill and chalked it up to coincidence.

Just be very careful when you mock a mans prayers when they are not for his own gain but the comfort of those he doesn't even know. To say a mans prayers mean less because he holds an office is a sin greater than the inaction of your will in policy.
How long does it take for someone to pray for the comfort of victims before we hear God saying, "Well, dumba$$, that's why you are there. Get on it." That is the power of prayer where you are open to the will of God. It changes those who pray. Now, for those who "got it all right, now" there is little hope (whether saved or not) of change. After all, they are righteous, right? They know it all now, right? Why change perfection, right?

Of course there is also the cha-ching! of the political, but that is all something else.

In short, people are sick of hearing "I'll pray for you" when there are also things you can do about it.
My greatest sympathy for those who are sick of prayer. The truth is there have been things proposed other than more gun restrictions by the prayer warriors. I believe people are not going to listen to any common sense school protection.
I smoke a cigar because the body is a temple and the temple needs incense. -Michael Knowles

Pumpkin Ale is more American than apple pie! -Tuttle

When chaos manifests itself, what makes you think that anyone tame will be good for anything? -Jordan B. Peterson

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