Wednesday, April 19, 2006

We are what we do, not what we say

Good deeds are the best prayer.
- Serbian proverb

Why would we pray with words to a God that knows everything already? The reason could only be to sort through our thoughts so that we know what we want to believe.

If we believe in an omnicient God, it would make sense that he would know not just what we want to say to him, but what we need and hope for as well.

When we pray to God, it's usually the case where we want God to do something. We don't expect God to speak back to us. We expect (or hope) that God will act as his way of responding to our requests.

Why, then, would we not act ourselves instead of speaking in words? If God speaks in deeds and we want to be like God, then it would make sense to act in the way we expect God to act. That's the Golden Rule, which has versions in many cultures and goes back at least to Confucius.

We pray by what we do, not by what we say.

We live a rich life by giving to others of ourselves, not by taking as much as we can get. Only a fool would equate money or good words with a good deed. Money or good words are cheap substitutes, at best.

Bill Allin
'Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems,' striving to get us allo heading in the same direction.
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