Union Ridge Church

Monday, March 8, 2021

by Reverend Dan on March 8, 2021

“Faith without works is dead.”

James 2:17

Want to know a phrase that will shut down an idea at church in a second?

You ready? It’s really going to surprise you . . .

“We don’t need to talk about it anymore. What we need to do now is just pray about it.”

You know the drill. Every time you suggest a change at church, the hair on the neck of the “because that’s the way we’ve always done it” people stands up and in an effort to shut down the idea they say that phrase as though it settles the discussion.

Permanently table the idea. Hope it goes away. Whatever you want to call it they are hiding behind the cross so “their” church stays just like it is. They take a human preference and try to put a spiritual mask on it to guilt everyone into dropping the idea.

Wait a minute, Rev. Dan. How can prayer be a bad thing? It’s not and the “no” crowd knows that. In fact, they’re counting on it. Countering that statement in a church setting puts you in a horribly awkward position. If you disagree, you sound like you’re against prayer. If you agree, you’ve just mothballed any productive conversation. Seriously, who wants to speak out against prayer?! Not me. So, we shut down the conversation and the new idea gets packed up and put in permanent storage.

Can it be that something that sounds so spiritual can actually stop some truly spiritual work?

Absolutely. In the name of God, some people end up opposing the work of God. And it’s all done in the most holy-sounding way.

Don’t use prayer as a smokescreen. You see, saying “All we need to do is pray” misses how God works. If all we needed to do was pray, we could lock ourselves in a closet and never come out. But what begins in prayer should end in action,

As St. Augustine said many years ago, “pray as though everything depended on God; work as though everything depended on you.”


Father hear our prayers and then move us to bring those prayers to fruition for Your kingdom. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.