I wrote about the lack of rain a few weeks ago. My little food plot needed a drink so bad. It still does, but the drought continues. And it's probably too late now, anyways. Something growing in the middle of October seems unlikely. I did all that I could do. I needed God to send the rain. He hasn't. I can only pray he does. I guess it's that "thoughts and prayers" thing. But it looks like my food plot doesn't lack the thoughts and prayers. It looks like, maybe, I'm being shown how bad it really would be without what God does during a normal year.
There are so many today who are bemoaning, criticizing, and even scoffing whenever someone offers "thoughts and prayers." Their argument is that it is an excuse for inactivity. I completely understand what they mean, especially the "thought" part of the "thoughts and prayers" offering. What do my thoughts toward you, or anyone, actually accomplish? The "prayer" part is something altogether different, if prayer matters. But even in that, I understand the criticism. The thinking is this - just as I had to plant my field before God could water it, we all must do our part in other areas before God can do his part as well. For some reason, however, it doesn't feel like the critics are looking for a partnership with God. It feels more as if they think prayer has very little, or no effect, on anything going on - like it hasn't mattered in the past, and it doesn't matter now, so, let's forgo the prayer thing and just take action. I hope I'm wrong in my assessment. But have you ever thought that perhaps what is going on now is the result of people's ongoing prayers? I mean have you ever thought that perhaps there would be more violence and more catastrophes, and more suffering, if not for those who bring these things before God each day, or if not for the ongoing mercies of God? Just ask it this way. Could things be worse? And if so, what (or who) keeps them from becoming that way? God has withheld the rain from my food plot - the rain I had come to expect, depend on, and yes, take for granted. He has shown me it could be worse.
Does praying make a difference? Is it important? I think the answer to both questions is yes. I also think I need to act as well. And if I want an example of doing both, I can look to Jesus. He acted and prayed. And now that I think about it, I'm glad he "thought" about me as well.