When money can’t buy comfort, there’s prayer

When tragedy strikes, we Americans are quick to show we care through our giving. In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, for example, concerned folks responded with $37.5 million worth of compassion, and the total continues to grow. In the case of the Haiti earthquake, it was $153 million within the first four days.

From loose change tossed in a cup beside a cash register, to the millions raised via star-studded telethons, in times of trouble, we put our money where our hearts are. And usually, our donations buy some comfort for the hurting ones.

But not this time. Not in the wake of the horrific school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut this past Friday.

There’s no gift big enough to make right the terrible wrong done on that mid-December morning. No amount of money can bring back the 20 children and 6 adults who died at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. Or the mother, in her home a few blocks away. Or the troubled young man who took his own life along with so many others.

In this instance, we’re left holding our checkbooks, wanting to help, but uncertain how to proceed. If our money can’t buy comfort, what then?

For people of faith, the answer is to pray — the very thing the people of Newtown have asked us to do.

Newtown pray

Today, MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) International – a ministry organization which I’m proud to serve as a board member – will host a National Call to Prayer. We’ve invited our 90,000 plus member and mentor moms to join the MOPS staff and board at 9:45 a.m. (CST) in lifting up the grieving families of Newtown to the One who bears all grief and comforts all hearts.

As MOPS President Sherry Surratt explains:

We’re going to pray for the families who lost a sweet child. We’re going to pray for the moms across the world who now feel fear. We’re going to pray for the families who right now are wondering how they will take that next breath because it hurts too much. We’re going to pray for the students and staff at Sandy Hook and the community of Newtown. We’re going to pray for courage and the power to forgive.

Never mind if you’re reading this post after the December 19 prayer time. Grief doesn’t follow the clock or the calendar. Weeks, months, even years from now, the people of Newtown, CT, will welcome your prayers on their behalf. And weeks, months, even years from now, God will hear and respond.

Yesterday, today, and tomorrow, when money can’t buy comfort, there’s prayer — always prayer. Thank God for that.

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