September 03, 2005
September 2, 2005
How do I even begin to write a “Coffee Talk” this week in the middle of so many sad circumstances? Originally, I was going to tell you about last weekend’s “Motherhood Club Event” but I will save that for later. It is truly unbelievable that so many people could lose everything overnight. I can’t even begin to imagine what they must be going through. I pray they have the hope of the Lord.
Steve has been on “Storm Watch” for days. We tease him about his CNN/Fox News obsession. He surfs back and forth all day long and then when he gets in the car, the radio is immediately tuned in to more news of the hurricane.
At first the devastation seemed surreal, almost like watching a movie about a natural disaster. Then the news channels started focusing the cameras on the faces and the families and the homes. Then it became real. I made myself stop, disassociate myself from the objective news reports and think about what these people must be feeling.
Imagine…all you have are the clothes on your back. You had to leave your scrapbooks, mementos, family heirlooms, that dress that makes you feel so pretty, those pants that fit just right, your favorite coffee mug, comfy-cozy pillow and on and on and on. Not only do you no longer have a place to live, but you also don’t have a job, so you don’t have any money or way of making any money. You have no place to go and no way to get there.
So, you wait and wait and wait, in the same clothes for days, sleeping in the middle of stench and chaos and fear and despair. Until you climb on a bus heading away from life as you’ve known it. If you are one of the fortunate ones, you still have your family safely gathered around you for comfort and support. At least you can get through this together.
Oh, but how in the world can they survive this upheaval if they have not built their house on the Rock? My main prayer is for those who know the Lord to sense His presence and strength and comfort and grow closer to Him as a result of this trial. I believe with all of my heart, that as tragic as this tragedy is, God is still on the throne and in control. Every affected believer can anticipate looking back on these dark days and saying, “As hard as it was, I would go through it again for the sweet blessing of knowing my faithful Lord and Provider and Supplier of all my needs like I’ve never known Him before.”
As the television cameras pan the interior of football stadiums I hear Jesus saying, “Look, the fields are white for harvest.” Can you think of a better time to share the love of Jesus? So often, the comforts and promises of this world masquerade as security and happiness. Well, these dear people have been stripped of just about everything the world can offer them. Oh dear God, send Your Spirit to whisper Your hope and salvation to these desperate hearts! Draw them near to You and may they find the hope their souls have been longing for in You.
I have been so convicted by the Lord through this about how myopic my little world is. I pray daily and fervently for my family, loved ones, and you. But it is so easy to forget there is a whole world of lost and hurting people. I can’t use the excuse, oh it is just too big to even comprehend. What could my little prayers do anyway? The answer to that question is, nothing – but my big God can do an awful lot and He chooses to respond to our little prayers.
I received this month’s “Today’s Christian Woman” magazine in the mail a couple of days ago. My hero, Beth Moore, is on the cover! One paragraph from her interview jumped off the page and straight into my heart. She says, “The Lord’s shown me how important it is to stay in tune with what’s going on in the lives of oppressed people around the world. I pray daily beyond my own little world to keep me not only from being too self-centered but also too family-centered. There’s a big world out there. I can implode with self-absorption if I’m not careful.” Oh, how true are those words in my life. I think 90% percent of my prayers and thoughts center around my kids.
It has helped me this week to realize that every single face I see on the television screen is one of God’s kids. I wonder if they have a mother who prays desperately for them. Just in case they don’t, I will. May I encourage you not to simply sit back and observe what is going on on the other side of the television screen? Enter in. Make it interactive. Pick out a face in the crowd and intercede to the Father for that person.
In this week’s journal entry, rather than include pictures of my own family, I’ve found faces on the Internet to intersperse in this journal entry. (By the way, this is the way the photos will always be displayed on the new website, rather than having to open up a separate window for photos.) Please pray for these lives and the thousands of lives they represent.
I’ve received a half-dozen emails today alone with ways to help the victims of Katrina. I’m so thankful America is rising up and reaching out. Just last week as I was writing my “Taking Care of the Me in Mommy” book I was culling through some ideas to include for household organization. One of the tips was to go through your linen closet and only keep two sets of sheets for each bed in the house and give the others away. Another tip was to spend a week eating only what is already in your freezer and pantry. Tomorrow morning, our family has plans to “organize” our whole house.
We are going to pretend like we are moving again and box up everything we haven’t used, worn, or eaten in the last year. The neighborhood church in our community has asked for all donations and they have a plan in place for distributing our “goods.” Isn’t it sad that our “throwaways” are somebody else’s “goods.”
Not that we should only give that which costs us nothing. Yesterday, I was praying that the Lord would give me His heart of compassion for the stranded people. (You see, I’m not by nature a very compassionate person. Just ask my children when they are sick. I try, but I am definitely lacking in this area. I’m more of a look at the bright side-trust God-get up and get over it – kind of girl.)
About that time Steve received an email from the Foursquare denominational headquarters in Los Angeles telling about some churches in the Gulf region who could use our financial aid. Steve and I immediately agreed that we needed to send a check right away. Instantly, I was awash with tenderness for the hurricane victims and the Lord whispered to my heart, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
As a matter of fact, I’m going to end this journal entry right here and I highly recommend you stop reading and send a check to the Red Cross or your local church relief plan or other reputable organization. Yes, for the good of the people on the Gulf, but also for your own good. God bless America.
Posted by weblion at 03:28 PM