The church is leading the way. 

Hurricane Harvey.

Puerto Rico.

Las Vegas.

When the going gets tough, the church rises up.

But have you heard all the talk about “thoughts and prayers”?

The most commonly thrown around verbiage in the tragedy that has been the last two months, has been “My thoughts and prayers are with you.” From politicians to rock stars, news anchors and community leaders, it’s been a tweet and blast of thoughts and prayers.

Thoughts are good, but food is better. Prayers are solid, but water is needed.

The hard part? Both are needed. Thoughts and prayers, as well as food and water. The even harder part? We have to have this conversation. We need to. 96% of the people of Puerto Rico, an American territory, is without access to clean water. Medical facilities are out across the island. Water-borne diseases are rampant.


A deranged, disturbed, and fully-automated terrorist takes the lives of fifty-eight citizens having the time of their lives. And again, “My thoughts and prayers are with you.”

Thoughts and prayers are good. But they are not enough. It’s that whole James 2 thing, you know; faith and works.

My thoughts and prayers are with you, and so is my calendar and checkbook. Whatever you need, it’s yours.

The church is leading the way. But it doesn’t take a tragedy, or rather, should not take a tragedy, for the church to meet the needs of those they love to serve.

That’s why I loved seeing my friends Vince and Jud lead Las Vegas through this mess. They showed up, are offering free counseling by licensed professionals, and are showing Las Vegas what it’s like to send thoughts, prayers, and resources in a time of lead. It’s just like my friend Rafael and his church in Houston, who literally pulled people from their homes and brought them to safety in their little boat.

The church is showing up. Every day. Here’s what we ask you to do: Show up too. Be exactly who you say you are. Be the kind of church that people like talking about. And in the end, we will have a community whose story is your story, and it most definitely will be God’s story.

You can also do something about it today, and visit and partner with my good friend Vince Antonucci and Verve Church in helping create a path forward.