We are living in a time of what used to be considered unimaginable horror, but which has now become so normalized that we’re now numbed to it all. We feel that whatever is happening is so far beyond our ability to do anything about that we either do nothing or do something safe such as offering thoughts and prayers. There is nothing wrong at all about offering thoughts and prayers; they are a way of letting people know that we are with them. But there comes a point when thoughts and prayers are simply not enough. Actions must, at some point, accompany the prayers.
James 2:17 says, “Thus also, faith without works is dead.” Many biblical scholars have taken this to mean that works consistent with the ideals of the Christian faith should naturally follow if we have true faith; if not, then our faith is empty and meaningless, and we are lying to God and ourselves. It is just as important to note, however, that good works by themselves do not guarantee us salvation. The two – faith and works – must necessarily be joined together.
I do not claim to have all the answers to what ails our society, but I do know that it is not enough just to offer thoughts and prayers, and nothing else. At some point, we will have to act on our faith and let our good works flow through the world. If we are going to claim that we are Christians, then it is high time that we started believing and acting the way Jesus taught us.