Friday, August 19, 2016

Faith After the Flood

Below are my initial thoughts after the recent devastating flooding in south Louisiana.

“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. … Because you are precious in my sight, and honored, and I love you” (Isaiah 43:1-2, 4).

Dear People of God,

The recent devastating flooding that has affected all of our lives has left us shaken, heartbroken, and grieving. So many have suffered damage to homes and the loss of vehicles and treasured possessions. The sheer magnitude of what has happened, and the pressing needs of thousands of people, is staggering. It will take months and perhaps years to fully recover.

It sometimes feels like it’s too much to bear. But we will make it through this. We will do it together as a St. Luke’s church and school family. We will do it as fellow citizens of the great state of Louisiana. And we will do it by relying on our faith in a God who knows us each by name, who loves us, who cherishes us as precious, and who promises that the waters of affliction and the fires of adversity will not take us down.

God will see us through this. He’s already doing it through people who are reaching out in love and concern to all who have been affected. And He will continue to do so by giving us the strength and the perseverance we need to move forward.

As a church, St. Luke’s will continue to find ways to be a part of this important work of living our faith by bringing hope and healing to those needing help to rebuild their lives. So many of you have already participated in those efforts by cleaning out flood-damaged homes, making food, giving money to the clergy discretionary funds, and contributing supplies for needy police officer families. Thank you!

Please continue to be on the lookout for other opportunities to live our faith by reaching out in love to the needy in our church and our community. We will communicate that information via the church website and church emails.

I feel blessed to be a part of the St. Luke’s community. When the call goes out to St. Luke’s to help, you can be counted on to respond. It’s a moving example of putting our faith into action. I am proud of the many ways we are living out our mission of caring for one another as God in Christ cares for us.

As we work our way into the recovery and rebuilding phase of this disaster, I invite you to add the following prayer to your daily prayers:

Dear Lord, we pray for those whose lives have been devastated by rain and flood. Protect the vulnerable. Strengthen the weak. Give comfort to the grieving. Bring relief to the suffering. And may our response to all in need be generous and such as would bring you praise. Amen.

Love and blessings to you all,
Fr. Bryan

1 comment:

Mary Lowe said...

Lovely response, Rev. Bryan. Thank you. Love to All, Mary Lou