America is facing one of the worst droughts in its history. By mid-summer 63 percent of our nation’s landmass was dry and over 2,000 counties in 29 states were declared natural disaster areas. The extremely hot temperatures and barren skies are causing a huge economic impact, which will affect every American, beginning foremost with our nation’s farmers.
Tom Vilsack, the Secretary of the USDA, has been watching the drought conditions closely. In a White House press briefing he said, “I get on my knees every day . . . And I’m saying an extra prayer now. If I had a rain prayer or a rain dance I could do, I would do it.”
This comment bothered Tom Flynn, Executive Director for the Council on Secular Humanism. “It sends the wrong message to distraught farmers when the Agriculture Secretary suggests that the best response is to pray,” said Flynn. “For a Cabinet official to recommend prayer as a solution . . . may violate the Constitution’s prohibition against establishment of religion. Most important, though, is that prayer doesn’t work . . . Apparently Secretary Vilsack has been praying for rain every day; how’s that working out?”
A tenet of Mr. Flynn’s world view is Fairness and Justice. In response Flynn violated his own tenets when he mocked Vilsack’s beliefs, falsely accusing him of constitutional obstruction and intentionally misrepresented his views.
I live in an agriculture community that has been affected by the hot and dry temperatures. On the day Vilsack made his comment about prayer the clouds moved in, temperatures cooled and we received rain. Prayer works!
Prayer can be a loose word. Many world religions use the word “prayer”. As a Christian I pray to the one true God. He is no myth or legend. He is as real as the computer I am typing on. And He is the One who created heaven and earth and has power over the weather. No human being can lower temperatures, create a cloud, or send rain at a specific location, time or in a certain amount.
We should pray for our nation and also pray for the growing number of skeptics that doubt the existence of God and power of prayer. His desire for all humanity is to “. . . know that the Lord is God; there is no other besides him” (Deuteronomy 4:35). May in Him they find their hope for today.
Clint Decker, Clay Center, Kan., is President & Evangelist with Great Awakenings, Inc. Since 1991, he has reached over two million people with his message of hope.