This past week along with many other communities we faced danger. This danger was an outbreak of tornadoes. For us, the first round was early Wednesday morning. The next round was Friday afternoon. Thankfully, our community was spared with little damage though a tornado was in our area. Though I along with others in my community are counting blessings and giving thanksgivings, there are so many people who have suffered loss. Loss of property, loss of loved ones, loss of neighborhoods, communities, and possessions that were dear to them.
When we heard the timing of these outbreaks of storms and when they would reach our area, Jim decided to come home to pick up our youngest baby, Smokey and me to take us back to his office. We have a black lab, Tori which was impossible for us to take with us since Jim works in a healthcare facility. Also, there was not a very good place we could have placed her at his office without interference. Yet, before leaving the house, Jim and I made sure she as secure as she could possible be in our bathroom. Once we secured her, we took a look around our home one more time. Neither one of us really said anything but I know we were both thinking if we would be coming back to our home or to a pile of sticks. But, at that moment, all that was important was that we were together as a family, to pray and just take a deep breath and hold tight to each other and God’s hand.
As I watch the scenes of devastation, and hear reports from family and friends that were affected by these storms, my heart aches for them. One minute, a family has home and in a matter of seconds it is shattered by force to be reckoned with. The homes are not only shattered to splinters and debris but you can see the hearts and nerves of the victims shattered as well. But, despite this brokenness, they hold tight that they have their family. It is at that moment in time when you look around your home, look across the room at your spouse and/or other family members and realize all that is around you is all material. The true treasures are your loved ones including friends and that no matter what happens to the earthly home there is an eternal home that will never be shattered.
This past week’s devastation gave us all a quick wake up call of how precious life is and I know ALL of us began to assess what is truly important. Matthew 6: 19-21 kept running through my mind and heart; “Do not lay up yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be.” We have witnessed not only this past week but through similar tornado outbreaks from the past that our earthly treasures are not permanent. This is why it is so important for us to invest in our relationship with Christ, family, and friends. We must also reach out beyond our walls to those we don’t even know who need to experience the wonderful grace and love of God.
At this moment I have an investment opportunity. This investment is one that will last a lifetime and into eternity. The opportunity I speak of is sharing the kingdom of God during this very emotional time in people’s lives who have lost everything. We can share the kingdom of God through the following ways:
1. Volunteer with helping in cleaning up.
2. Hold the victims’ hands and console them as they work through their emotions.
3. Prepare food for the victims and volunteer workers.
4. Donate what you can in the way of clothing and needs for setting up housekeeping.
5. Pray for all who are involved.
7. Most of all just love on not only the victims but love on your family and neighbors.
Let’s not wait for the next horrible natural disaster to happen to invest into people. But, plunge into this investment opportunity right now. Invest by showing the kingdom of God through our actions towards others and simply loving on everyone. As we have witnessed, things can happen in a second and we better have already invested ourselves in the kingdom. I encourage you to take me up on this offer and join me in investing in the kingdom of God by being a living example of God’s kingdom.
My thoughts, love and prayers are with ALL who suffered through this past week’s events. May these folks feel God’s loving arms holding them ever so tight during this time. It is my prayer that they are seeing God’s kingdom at work as they pick up the pieces and start anew.
I also would like to say thank-you to the wonderful staff at my husband’s facility for not only allowing him to bring me and my pup up to be with him and to be safe. But for opening their doors to the community for all who needed a safe haven. It was their smiles as they asked for your name for their rooster and their calmness that help small children stay calm and to insure that we were all safe. These people definitely demonstrated the kingdom of God during a time of facing a few minutes of an unknown.
Blessings and Peace-
- Kentucky Woman Prays Away Tornado (VIDEO) (blippitt.com)
- Illusions (aprilhawk.wordpress.com)
- First Things First (pbus1.wordpress.com)
- A trust investment (pastorayres.wordpress.com)