In the wake of another tragic shooting – this time in San Bernardino, California – the internet is abuzz with talk we’ve all grown numbly accustomed to: gun control, terrorism, information about the shooters and the victims, etc. Not surprisingly, many are expressing their concerns and offering up their prayers.

But there is something new this time around: prayer shaming (that’s the phrase being coined). There’s been a bizarrely strong backlash – mostly from the left – against prayer as a legitimate response to the tragedy. “God Isn’t Fixing This” reads a New York Daily News headline that reflects the somewhat hostile sentiment of more than just a few bitter people. The assumption, as Emma Green points out in her excellent piece in The Atlantic, seems to be that prayer and action are mutually exclusive, with the former being ultimately meaningless, equivalent to doing nothing. Of course, any basic understanding of Biblical prayer would prove quite the contrary. Green ends her piece with a telling observation that the victims themselves hardly shared in the negative sentiment:

The most powerful evidence against this backlash toward prayer comes not from the Twitterverse, but from San Bernardino. “Pray for us,” a woman texted her father from inside the Inland Regional Center, while she and her colleagues hid from the gunfire. Outside the building, evacuated workers bowed their heads and held hands. They prayed.

For another thoughtful response, look no further than Joel Miller’s “Ignore the Pundits and Keep Praying.” Indeed. We couldn’t have said it better ourselves.

Image Credit: Craig Sunter