Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Loving God and Loving Others

Wow, What a privilege to serve with so many helping and encouraging the Tornado victims around Chattanooga in the last several weeks. I loved watching God at work as He used His people to comfort and minister to those who were hurting in the storm's aftermath.

Some people lost power for several days. Others lost valuable property. Some lost businesses. Some lost homes. Some even lost family members, friends, and loved ones. But God used many people from here and all over the country to bring help, consolation, and supplies to those impacted by the storms.

Many churches and other Disaster Relief agencies are still working to help people get back on their feet. Many of you were there on the ground being the hands and feet of Jesus to help bring some reassurance to the storms victims. Many of you contributed resources. I want to encourage you all in your acts of love in the name of Jesus Christ.

In the history of the church, Christians have been known for how they love others especially in times of crises. During invasions, plagues, storms, floods, earthquakes, etc, the surviving pagans often ran away, abandoning family and neighbors. The pagans felt those harmed by the disasters had angered the gods and they were afraid they too would suffer if they didn’t sever all ties with the victims. But the Christians on the other hand, had a reputation for staying in the middle of the disaster to take care of those who had been hurt, gotten sick, or suffered loss. Jesus said, they will know you are my followers “by your love.” We have a privilege to join in the Body of Christ’s great history of helping those who are hurting.

I want to say thank you to those of you who helped. Ridgedale's shower and laundry trailers were deployed on three separate sites to help and encourage some of the communities affected by the tornados. The trailers went to Bradley County, Apison Baptist Church, and Cherokee Valley Baptist Church to provide some assistance in the relief efforts. Some clean up crews also helped clear debris from some sites that were devastated by the tornado. I know many of you helped with other churches and organizations. I just want to encourage you in Christ and say keep up the God work!