Psalm 91:14-16 - "Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, and show him My salvation.”
Everyone is aware of the disaster of Hurricane Harvey and the devastation in Texas. It's heartbreaking. I did not have a title for this until I typed something later. Funny how that works.
As I read this scripture this morning I thought of the people of Texas and prayed for the many who have lost their homes, possessions and even family. They have nothing. They will rely on others for a time for food and shelter.
Food and shelter are physical needs. What about emotional? Others can offer words of support but they might not take away the pain of very raw emotions. But there is One who can. His name is Jesus. If we call upon the name of the Lord, He will supply all our needs, including those emotional ones. He can bring the peace and comfort to anyone's life, if they know Him and call on Him for their spiritual salvation and needs they have in this life on earth.
Amid these people I have prayed that many would know our God and His power in their lives. I have prayed that through this tragedy the love of God would be seen in those believers who do know Him and because of their testimonies, unbelievers would look to God for the source of their strength and salvation.
When we get to a point in our lives when nothing else gives comfort, because of illness, death or great losses like Texas, may we find the hope and strength that only Jesus brings.
Many times it's through tragedy that we come to Christ. We have to be broken. Tragedy can bring us to our knees with the realization we are vulnerable and that we cannot always save ourselves, nor can money, family or friends. But God... Listen to what He can do, if one is willing to receive Him...
But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus...For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. (Ephesians 2:4-6,8-9)
God is great in mercy. He offers a great gift, not one that we can work for, but one we can receive. This gift is Jesus. I realize that in times of tragedy not all will turn to God. Anger over what they have gone through, questioning how a God who is supposed to be so good could allow this, will be their choice. I pray this is not the case in Texas.
In this life we have never been promised all goodness. We live in a world of sin which brings about disappointment, illness, death. But God...who is rich in mercy...made a way that we could endure all things. There's the key word, endure. Who hasn't endured something in the natural knowing there was relief on the other side of a situation? Take just a common cold, sinus infection or inconvenient, minor (or major) surgery. Once this is over things will be better, we might say. A doctor can get us through, our body's healing process and our determination and patience can get us through.
But...I'm talking about a more important thing, the hope and goodness that will come after an even bigger tragedy in life. Again, examples: A report of cancer, loss of a limb that changes a person's life altogether, death of a child, loss of home or business. Where do we draw our strength now when doctors can only do so much or when insurance (if one has it) can only do so much? That way is Jesus Christ. He is our Great Physician and Provider. He is the Door, the Light, our strong Foundation, our Rock, the Living Water, the Bread of Life, our hope, peace, salvation. He takes care of His own. But you have to become part of His own first.
That's why it is good to know and trust in God now, before any trial. You will know immediately who to go to. And, as His Word tells us, He will bring the comfort, strength and peace in the midst of our illness, loss or trial.
God will provide through others for Texans. They will receive from believers and unbelievers. They will benefit and survive and move on. But my prayer will still be that many people will come into a saving relationship with Christ as a result of this...when they see (hopefully) how believers respond to the tragedy and hear testimonies of their survival, how they called on Him in their worst time of need and He brought help, how, despite all loss, they still praise the name of their God.
Who will you cry out to for help in a trial, when the storms of life hit hard? He is there. For all people, all ages.
Psalm 56:3-4 - Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God (I will praise His word), in God I have put my trust; I will not fear. What can flesh do to me?