It's funny sometimes how we have plans and thoughts about our days and then things just seem to happen.
It was a regular day for me, nothing out of sorts, oh, we knew a storm was coming, and they were calling for real bad weather, but safe from the comforts of our home, we, like many, were glued to our television watching the radar show us what was on our way.
A flood? In my town? Really? Yes, really. It came in an instant. Torrential rain, swollen rivers and a recipe for disaster. I haven't seen as bad of an affect from a storm in over 2 decades!
Suddenly, our home grew a little less comfortable and the creeks and groanings that a storm like this can bring began to make us feel a little different.
Well, the storm has passed now, but the impact is still loud and clear! It will take weeks, months and perhaps even longer to come back from this.
There is no doubt some will blame God, shaking a fist to the sky. There are some that will call out on His name for comfort, help and relief. There are some who will laugh and mock those holding onto any hope that believing in God can actually make a difference at all.
My friends, there will always be floods. Always be storms. There are a few things that have stood out to me this past week as a result.
1. Be Ready
Coincidence is not something I equate to God. If there was ever any one, any where who had/has a plan, it is Him. We had at least a week of warnings and forecasts letting us know what was coming. In those moments, it is wise to be ready. Do you have batteries? Do you have candles? Do you have water? Do you have a plan of escape? We all face storms in our lives and what I have seen is that those who are prepared for the storms always fare better. Oh.. there are sudden storms, things that catch us by surprise, but that doesn't change the temperature of readiness. In our lives my friends, we have to be ready.
2. Be Available
The one thing I observed after this huge storm was/is the availability of people. There is no doubt some circumstances that can't change..... work, trips, family etc... but I'm talking about a spirit. A spirit of availability. In our home, we fared well. We kept our power and we had each other. But it's what happens after the storm that is even more important. What about the neighbor down the street that you don't know. What about the heart of a friend who lost something precious and dear that you consider just stuff? Being available is HUGE! How available are you
1. In your storm and 2. After the storm?
That is usually not easy. It requires prior readiness. It requires putting others above yourself. It requires forgiveness. It requires courage. It requires strength. It requires faith and sometimes when that faith is shattered it requires hope.
3. Be Present
Zombies. Okay.. just mentioning that word out in the middle of this blog is crazy.. but.. a zombie (theoretically speaking) could be ready, could be available, but just doing those things alone isn't always what is what makes the difference. It's almost as if just doing those other things could really make us resemble a zombie. Really digging into someone else's stuff that may not mean anything to you, could make all the difference in the world! A friend and I were working this week along side of many others and in the midst were some different faith backgrounds. There would usually be a place tension, but this time, we took a moment to be present. My friend pulled another one of these workers aside and said something along the lines of.. We know we have differences, but it has been a real joy just to be able to work with each other and accomplish the same thing. It was a press pause moment for me. A place where being present was important. It made a difference, and will forever. I want to encourage you to not only be ready and available, but be present.
There are all sort of flood scriptures in the bible and many that will be quoted, I chose one that made me think of in the midst of a real problem, God is even more real. I have seen so much good in the bad of this and many situations. They are not all easy and I would never make light of tragedy, but he is still there. God, I pray that in the midst of all the crazy stuff going on on this big blue ball, many of which are our own fault, we take time not only to be prepared, but be ready and in that readiness we are present. You are ever present and I thank you that in the midst of it all, one thing will always stand true..... #GodsGotThis