When it comes to shootings, let’s keeping praying, thinking and acting

Prayer is not a substitute for action, but the fuel that drives it.

By Vaughn Baker
President, Strategos International

At Strategos, we do our best to highlight people who are leading the charge doing good in our communities. In that spirit, we salute Mount Pleasant Christian Church of Greenwood, Indiana.

The Franklin (Indiana) Daily Journal reports:
“Congregations, led by Mount Pleasant Christian Church, have distributed window clings to their members to place on the inside of their windshields. Each cling encourages people to ‘Pray Always for Staff and Students,’ and the hope is that it will remind people to say a small prayer as they pass local schools.

Obviously, the solution to the ongoing problem of school violence is complex and will require concrete actions by the community. Still, an opportunity to pray for the safety of everyone in local schools could make a big impact. We certainly need to come up with plans of safety and security for our schools. But this is something who anyone who is a believer can be involved in, and it’s really simple.
— Chris Philbeck, pastor

This could not be said any better. Except maybe like this:

“Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray.” – James 5:13

Is prayer a cop-out?
Unfortunately, prayer has been getting a bad rap as mass shootings multiply. You can read the disappointing details here. This attitude is summed up most succinctly by this New York Daily News cover: “God Isn’t Fixing This.” The gist: A call to prayer is a call to inaction and denial. Serious people don’t have time for such nonsense – just start passing laws. Now.

 Is prayer the last refuge of cowards who spew "meaningless platitudes."  We think not.

Is prayer the last refuge of cowards who spew "meaningless platitudes." We think not.

Strategos is a faith-centered organization and we count it an honor to work with churches nationwide. Rest assured, our one-day to week-long seminars are not prayer meetings, though we certainly include prayer. We teach tactics and call churches to specific action in stopping the scourge of active shooters.

But any strategy that excludes prayer is incomplete. We are facing adversaries of overwhelming proportions. We need a Power that is greater than our resources.

“If you’re not praying and thinking in response to mass murders like the attack on the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, your response isn’t as effective as it could be,” said attorney and columnist David French. “If there’s one thing that’s clear from the spate of mass killings in the United States, it’s that we need God to move.

“The sad and terrifying fact is that no one has a reliable answer for evil men who want to commit mass murder. And when no one has the answers, isn’t that exactly the time to pray?”

Absolutely.

Pray. Study. Learn. Act. Then rinse and repeat.

“Never stop praying.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:17

 Vaughn Baker is the president of Strategos International.

Vaughn Baker is the president of Strategos International.