As the smoke clears from another horrific mass shooting, politicians once again are offering their “thoughts and prayers.” I join many frustrated citizens and people of faith when I say that thoughts and prayers are not enough.
When someone we know is afflicted with a disease, we offer thoughts and prayers; but we also try to help them cure the disease.
When hurricane victims lost everything, we sent our thoughts and prayers; but we also sent food and water.
When we send our soldiers into battle, our thoughts and prayers go with them; but so do munitions, armor, and military strategy.
Thoughts and prayers are good. Thoughts and prayers are compassionate. Thoughts and prayers carry weight with our God.
But thoughts and prayers won’t feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, heal the sick, or make us safer. God asks us to pray, yes. But he also asks us to be His hands and feet in the world. That requires action.
No, thoughts and prayers are not enough to heal the hearts of those who lost a loved one in Sutherland Springs, Texas. And they are not enough to prevent the next mass shooting.