Post From May 22 2013

Here is a post after my last and third day on site after the May 20 Moore Tornado.

It’s A New Day

Yet another experience. Have you seen these before and after pictures?

Today started off raining like crazy. I wouldn’t be surprised if there were flash floods, so that seriously dampened the morning’s efforts.

When I drove up to Command Central near Home Depot, the first person I talked to was Mark. He was in his Salvation Army gear, and was headed back to their truck. He told me that the Lord saved him in 1999. The doctors had wanted to stop life support, but his mother wouldn’t let him. Then he gave his life to God, and was stopped cold from his addiction to marijuana. Since then, he had dedicated his life to serving others, mostly through the Salvation Army. “The Lord’s in charge here. He has a purpose for me, and he has a purpose here,” he said. Well said, Mark. Well said.

Bobby and I walked around and prayed for people. John and his wife Timmy called us over to pray for them, so we did. We talked to other home owners who were just trying to figure out what to do next. We were pelted with rain, and very few people were out in the deluge.

The sun finally came out, and so did more people. We talked to several reporters who had been there for days, and we encouraged them and their hearts and reminded them that we knew that they were people too who had seen and been here, and that God cared for them. One woman said that people had been praying down on the Texas/Mexico border, and we told her that those prayers had mattered.

We ended our day in a meeting with the other Oklahoma churches in our denomination, praying and asking the Lord for help and guidance. We are connecting through the PCA website for both physical volunteer help and also donations. We want to serve Moore and the surrounding areas in the months to come. We’re in it for the long haul. It’s been a privilege to work together with other Acts29 churches (one of whom lost his house!) in the area to serve Moore and our city well. These churches have been exemplary, and we have a lot to learn from their example and service. Our heart is their heart.

We’re walking together with Jesus because he cares for these people and to build his church, his bride, his hope, his promise. We’re not the Savior – he is. We’re here to help as we can. We need your help to help. Please help us by registering here to give money andhere to volunteer to come help us.

It’s been an exhausting honor to walk these streets and share these stories for these few days. I cannot believe more people didn’t die. It’s mind-boggling to see how many people were rescued from this disaster and that so few people died. We mourn those deaths, but we rejoice that so many were spared in a $2 billion damage, EF5 tornado that was on the ground for 17 miles and affected 13,000 people. Our God is a God of refuge. He is an ever-present help in trouble. We serve him. We worship him. We give glory and honor to him. We walk with him because he knows struggle and heartache.

It’s hard to know how to keep going. Ruth graduates from high school Friday night. Cal has a baseball game on Friday. We have families in town for the weekend. We have a Memorial Weekend picnic for church with a Steel Drum Band from Sante Fe South Charter School. We have a God who loves us and wants us to glorify him and enjoy him forever.