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Always There

    Oct 30, 2022 | by The Fellowship

    God is Good! Even in the midst of horrible circumstances, He is there. Who will ever forget 2017 when many of us got ravaged by Hurricane Harvey?  In our small tech firm, we decided that God would want us to pay our employees right through the aftermath of that storm. It nearly bankrupted us. And yet, in the final hours, He showed up in a huge way.

    Harvey changed us. It made us more sensitive to the suffering that happens “on the news” or “somewhere else.” God showed me that in the “Harveys of life,” there is opportunity. Opportunity to trust. Opportunity to actively practice peace. Opportunity to love others. Opportunity . . .

    And so, as Hurricane Ian prepared to strike southern Florida several weeks ago, we were very sensitive to the situation. When the storm turned right at the last moment, it directly hit Sanibel Island where my wife’s sister and her family live. Suddenly, no longer was it possible for them to practice “the evacuation drill” where you take necessities and move anything you want to keep to upper floors and prepare to come back and pick up the pieces 24 hours later. Instead, they had to flee to safety on the mainland.

    When Ian destroyed the causeway that was the only regular access to the island, it was time for us to act! There would be no returning to their home for months unless you could find a friend with a boat.  This was no “normal hurricane situation,” having to sit helplessly 15 miles away on the mainland while the flooded bottom floor of your home molded its way through your entire house – as well as all of your belongings.

    We flew two of their girls to Houston and had them stay with us for ten days so the grown-ups could  figure out a plan. And then we began the process of collecting furniture to load a Pod and send to them. My brother-in-law is the worship pastor at Sanibel Community Church. So they had the opportunity to pass out furniture in the name of Jesus to those who needed it (and they themselves needed a whole houseful, too!).

    I submitted a request to the prayer team at church: “My family in Florida is hurting and many, many others are also. If you have a nice piece of furniture you can part with, your donation would encourage people in the same situation that many of us endured in 2017.”

    When I was preparing to go and pick up various items of furniture that were being donated and get them to the Pod for shipment, my phone rang. It was a fellow church member. She and her husband had scheduled an estate sale for their home which they had recently sold because of wanting to downsize. But then she felt like God was telling them to cancel the sale. Even with not knowing why or how they would dispose of all of their extra furniture … they canceled the sale!

    Then … this woman and her husband heard about our prayer request and gave us most of the furniture that had filled their house! It now required TWO pods (we had to get a second one) and both of them have arrived in Florida.

    God knows what He is doing. He does not promise “easy” … but does promise to be there with us every step of the way. This situation is another instance where He has convinced me anew that He is always there! He is for us! He is good!

    Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people,
    especially to those who belong to the family of believers. 
    Galatians 6:10

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