Thursday, January 14, 2010

The faith factor

Today’s Reading: Acts 13:8 NIV

8 But Elymas the sorcerer (for that is what his name means) opposed [Barnabas and Paul] and tried to turn the proconsul from the faith.

Good morning!

The pictures on television are devastating. I could only watch so much before I dropped to my knees in a pool of tears. It is unimaginable that one of our sister nations has been ripped to shreds after a 7.0 magnitude earthquake occurred just two days ago in Haiti.

In a country where the unemployment rate is well over 50%, this earthquake has caused a catastrophic situation for thousands of people who live in this country. People are missing; families cannot locate their loved ones. As we see the injured emerge from the rubble, we watch in utter horror, as they lay in the streets bleeding to death, with broken bones and broken hearts, waiting for someone, anyone to help them. Aircraft from around the world are arriving with much needed food, water, and medical supplies, but there is no one there to help unload the emergency provisions and distribute to the needy. It would seem we cannot get there fast enough to help those in immediate need. What would this feel like if it were our country – our families and friends? To whom would we turn in our time of need?

Can you imagine holding a dying child in your arms, trying to comfort them, knowing there is no where to seek medical attention? What word would you offer that could make an everlasting difference, and bring hope and comfort to a wee one suffering in pain? Who would comfort you in your grief?

The faith factor is a necessity in times of devastation. We often think we can live on comfortably in the lifestyle we’ve grown accustomed to. As long as our own family is fine, we do not have the need to look beyond our own walls and spend time worrying about our brothers and sisters dying in the streets. I don’t know how we can become so self-absorbed; and yet, it often takes a massive foundational quake for mankind to feel their heart strings resonate with love and concern for their fellow man. Would you want to be like Elymas, trying to turn your brother away from the only One who brings hope to the hopeless, who heals broken hearts, who saves us by His grace?

In tumultuous days, hold on to the faith that you know is true! Jesus Christ came to save the whole world; the rich, the poor – He came for all of us. We must respond to the people of Haiti, and there is no time to waste. How can you make a lasting difference at such a time as this? Pray and ask the Lord for His healing power over a country that was demolished in a matter of seconds. Give what you can – every dollar will make a difference when there is such a great need. Ask the Lord how He would have you serve Him in this situation. Volunteer your time at your local church and find out how you can become personally involved in making a difference in the lives of those affected by the earthquake. The United Methodist Church will be there offering prayers, presence, gifts, service and its living witness to a country desperate to receive the hope of the world. If you want to help the people of Haiti, please consider making a donation today to UMCOR – the United Methodist Committee on Relief at:

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO


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