“It’s just stuff….We have each other….We have our health….It is time for us to share from what we have….Our friends have opened their home to us….I didn’t know that neighbor until this happened.”
“As the waters rose, we clung to each other. As the waters receded, the first thing we did was cling to each other and thank God. We didn’t go around and put things back in order or try to salvage, we went before God and prayed.”
What do we do first in a flood? After a flood? Where does our mind, heart and soul travel in those nanoseconds? The perishable items? God? People we love?
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Matthew 6:33
Indeed, we pray to be found having God on our mind when devastation is upon us. When all we have worked for is ruined? Yes, even then. God is loving and patient and kind and His Holy Spirit calls us to seek Him first so that we may experience the joy of that obedience. Many can easily rebuild, but what about those that cannot. Being trite about the flood with the reality that tens of thousands lost all they called “mine” or “home” to begin with. We must be careful with what could come across as comforting to one may not be comforting to all.
God knows our heart, God knows our needs and God will care for us in ways that will surprise and transform us. Most especially when we ‘bear one another’s burdens.’ When we are busy helping others, the list of what we will not do evaporates and becomes a list of all we will do, to help others; ‘fulfilling the law of Christ.’ No stench or smell is too horrendous. As Jesus counted Himself among us sinners, we may count ourselves among the flooded. A blister, an ache, a sneeze from a bit of mold – we may ‘count it all joy’ as we love our neighbors.
Holy Father, flood our hearts with your mercy and grace. Move us to seek you first. Forgive us when we see everything else first and may your compassion transform us. In seeking you first, help me see my neighbors’ needs. No matter my age or capabilities, you Lord, will offer ways for me to help. Flood our eyes and ears to see only you, Sweet Jesus, in your hurting people. Flood our souls with your forgiveness. Flood our thoughts with your resurrection and may we be your resurrection people. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Pattie said, “First Presbyterian’s team arrived first and worked so hard! Then a team from Memorial Drive Presbyterian worked so hard! People we’ve never met tore up their hands, bent their backs and strained their muscles. How did we deserve this help? The church was there when we needed them.”
In her words, she uttered His Words…
“…because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’” Hebrews 13:5