So, Gov. Rick Perry (TX)has issued a “3 Days of Prayer for Rain” edict. He’s taken some hits in the media and from others for this being kind of silly.
Which of course, has brought out defenders. Mainly Christians, who are asking what the big deal is. After all, does it really hurt anything? And no, calling for prayer obviously doesn’t hurt anything-even if one believes their is no deity to hear those prayers. So, is it unfair to ridicule Perry? Not really.
Imagine what would happen if he had called upon Native American Shamans to do ceremonial rain dances to end the drought. Would that hurt anything? No, not really. But I already no what the response would be from many of the people I know asking what the big deal is about the prayers. They would mock and deride the act. They would complain about government time being used to promote it. And how do I know this?
At the memorial for those who died in the shooting that wounded Rep. Gabriel Giffords and left a nine year old girl dead? A Native American chieftain gave the invocation prayer. And conservatives took the proper response. They stepped back with somber hear-oh who am I kidding? I had friends making fun of it. I saw some conservatives mock it on Twitter, Facebook and Fox News. But now, suddenly, those same folks ask “what’s the big deal?” Of course, as a lot of those Conservatives who mocked that incident claim to be “Christians”, a Christian Governor asking for Christian prayer for rain through an official Government Proclamation is somehow not silly. Because, as is typical (in my experience) that certain segments of Conservative Christians feel their beliefs should get respect from all and treated seriously…but they ought to be able to mock other beliefs with no sense of respect. The irony is that if you look how Paul approached things (such as with Mars Hill*) he showed respect to the beliefs of others. He knew there was no sharing the Gospel with people who knew he did not respect them.
*How ironic that people like Mark Driscoll, who show little respect to anyone (especially those with dissenting ideas) would dare to use the Mars Hill reference.