Volume > Issue > Forget Your 'Good Thoughts,' Send Us Your Prayers

Forget Your ‘Good Thoughts,’ Send Us Your Prayers

GUEST COLUMN

By F. Douglas Kneibert | September 2010
F. Douglas Kneibert is a retired newspaper editor and a 1999 convert from Protestantism. He writes from Sedalia, Missouri.

During my wife’s prolonged illness, in addition to many prayers from friends and relatives, she has been the recipient of occasional “good thoughts” sent her way. Sometimes they are even “warm and caring thoughts,” which is evidently a step up from merely “good.”

Prayers we encourage and appreciate, since they tap into the divine. But “good thoughts,” while sounding nice, are simply that. Nice.

Little did I realize how much traffic in good thoughts there is these days. The Internet and greeting-card companies are awash in good thoughts, those that are sent and those that are solicited. Books and articles on sending good thoughts abound. Among other things, you can buy “Sending Good Thoughts” coffee mugs, T-shirts, CDs, and refrigerator magnets. Oprah is very big on good thoughts.

For religious liberals, who to their satisfaction have pretty well cleansed Christianity of any traces of the supernatural, good thoughts are about all they have left. Those who belong to various shades of the New Age movement, being of one “universal mind,” also exchange a lot of good thoughts.

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