I continued my study of Hebrews this morning in the comfort of my living room. I drove on damp roads today while my tires splashed through a few occasional puddles. The rain has been starting and stopping very quickly; the sun has been coming out in between. I sit in a coffee shop right now with an iced tea next to me as I’m typing this.
As I was overwhelmed with thankfulness while I drove to this coffee shop on dry roads, God put it on my heart to write this. Today, I’m appreciating the little things, as many disasters cause us to do.
A catastrophe that will go down in history has unfolded just 250 miles west of us. A catastrophe that is still too fresh and familiar in our minds, because our city experienced record flooding just a year ago. While I personally was not affected (thank God), the majority of our city and neighboring towns fled their homes. They had absolutely no control over the terrifying scene of water engulfing their possessions and memories. I didn’t have many friends (actually, none really) at this time last year because I had just moved here, and God hadn’t let me yet to my current church home. But while I knew no one personally, I went to Home Depot after the rain ceased and bought cleaning supplies and tools to donate to people who had to gut their homes. I signed up to volunteer but was never called – but I’m glad my name was there in case they needed me.
I cannot figure out God’s plan or explain His ways. I am only a mere human and He knows far more than I could ever imagine. But, I do know that He is in full control of all things, including the forces of nature on Earth.
So as my city endures these “dry” bands, as the weather reporters are calling them, that are sweeping over us from the remnants of what is now Tropical Storm Harvey, I can’t help but notice His obvious act of mercy and protection on us.
While we sit in our air-conditioned homes tonight that might have freshly painted drywall and brand new flooring – we know all too well what it feels like to be a Houston/Beaumont (or surrounding area) resident right now. God is keeping us dry this year to help them out. Our experiences last year equipped us to aid our neighbors right now. We know exactly what they need.
Volunteer physically if you can, donate money, donate supplies, pray, do anything you can.
Use the resources that God has graciously given you in this present moment to overflow to those in desperate need.
Pray. Pray. Pray.
It’s not useless. He hears. He answers. The God who did miracles and responded to the heart-wrenching pleas of His people in the Bible is still our God today.
Embrace the mercy God has lavished upon you (if you live anywhere but East Texas) and extend your helping hand and resources. For He has had mercy on you so that you are able to do so.
“Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it.” Proverbs 3:27 (ESV)
Here are some links that our pastor emailed us this morning where you can donate online:
Here are some specific prayers that Texas needs:
My heart has been heavy today and yesterday and the day before. I’ve been praying.
As hard as it is to believe, God does use everything for our good. He is a perfect, holy, and loving God. Choose to trust Him and see His love in the midst of our broken world.
Rest in and cling to the finished work of Christ. Our possessions and homes will all be swept away one day. But if you have salvation in Christ Jesus, you are promised a forever home that will never be washed away.
“But recall the former days when, after you were enlightened, you endured a hard struggle of sufferings, sometimes being publicly exposed to reproach and affliction, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. For you had compassion on those in prison, and you joyfully accepted the plundering of your property, since you knew that you yourselves had a better possession and an abiding one. Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward.” Hebrews 10:32-35 (ESV) (emphasis mine)