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Psalm 69:13-15

But as for me, my prayer is to you, O Lord. At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love, answer me. With your faithful help rescue me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters. Do not let the flood sweep over me, or the deep swallow me up, or the Pit close its mouth over me.

Greetings from Pastor Dan!

As the people of Houston and surrounding cities face so much destruction and hardship this week, there are no doubt countless prayers pouring from mouths near and far. Prayers that sound so much like Psalm 69: pleading for relief, for rescue, and for support when all the supports are gone. We cry over the pain, suffering, and loss this storm has caused and continues to cause the people of the Gulf Coast, and we hope for reprieve and repair.

Storms like this and the damage they wreak in people’s lives are often called “acts of God.” Things that no one could predict nor defend against—hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions—so often feel like a disinterested boot stepping through an anthill.

On weeks like this I can’t help but wonder about the God of creation, the One that made this world and the physical laws that govern it, the God of sea and storm and wind. On weeks like this I can’t find answers to the questions within myself about why God allows these tragedies, and the beauty I often find in chaos is so hard to see.

What I do know, what I feel in my bones, is that God cries with each of those suffering in Texas and Louisiana. God knows their pain because their pain is God’s pain. Each hurt, each loss, every ounce of fear is not suffered alone, and I know God yearns for their deliverance.

And so, in the face of this and all other tragedies the children of God undergo, may we be the instruments of God’s deliverance. May we find the strength within ourselves to rescue those sinking in the mire, and may we discover God’s steadfast love within ourselves and become salve for the wounds of the world. We see the heroes of Houston and other cities affected. We see people in the surrounding areas opening their homes, their high ground, their food, and their transportation. We see people across the country giving blood, donating to relief organizations, and pushing to equip our laws and our institutions to respond to these crises. There are so many ways for we children of God to help each other. There are so many ways for God to answer prayer.

Prayer: God of storm and healing, comfort those afflicted this day and all days. Fill them with your love, and fill us with the strength and the wisdom to be your instruments in the best ways we can. Amen.