It is so easy -- too easy -- to become complacent in our daily lives when there is little challenge or discomfort. Within the confines of our "comfort-bubble," we can smugly peer down upon those struggling with things that we are not struggling with. Even the feeling of thankfulness for one's blessings can contort into a feeling of pride that we are more fortunate than someone else.
But in dire times such as these, when disasters or tragedies strip away all pretense, I am reminded of how we are all truly the same by nature.
IDES' staff members recently returned from the Houston, TX area, but the hard work of recovery continues.
Thanks to the hundreds of volunteers from local churches in the area, 30 storage sheds were built for families whose homes were damaged by flooding. The sheds can be used for safely storing belongings while one's home is being repaired. This gift allows a recipient to save hundreds of dollars per month on storage solutions and to put that money towards their recovery.
We were blessed to sit down with Dottie and Woody who received a shed, as well as Deborah (a.k.a. "Nanna") who received a shed, as they shared their stories with us which you can view below.
Following disasters like Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, it is only natural to start asking the question of God, "Why did this happen?"
Entire communities have been devastated beyond recognition. Families have lost their homes and livelihoods. Recovery will be long and difficult. Why did this happen?
As we continue our response to Hurricane Harvey in Texas, we have already made contact last week with local churches throughout Florida prior to Hurricane Irma’s landfall. The storm has begun to dissipate, and we praise God for that. As the waters recede and the churches we contacted are able to return to their communities, damage assessments will soon be underway.
IDES is prepared to respond to the needs of the affected communities in the name of Jesus. Please pray for both the families who are recovering in Texas, and for the families in Florida who are now in need. Stay tuned here on our profile, or on our website for the most up-to-date information on our response efforts.
You can make hope possible. If you would like to donate to assist hurricane victims in Florida or Texas, please click the button below and choose "Hurricane" as your designation at the bottom of the form. Or, you can send a check to IDES, PO Box 379, Noblesville, IN 46061.
As of this morning, IDES' first two loads of storage sheds have safely made it to Katy, TX. For the next several days, volunteers from the local churches in the area will be building these sheds for families whose homes were affected by the flooding. These families will then be able to use the sheds to store their belongings as their homes are repaired. IDES' US Disaster Response Coordinator is on the ground and leading the shed-building process with the local churches.
Volunteers from several of the churches have already been furiously working to help families tear out soggy dry-wall and sort through their belongings. This road will be a long one, but we are happy to report that "recovery" has officially begun. Your generosity is making hope possible in Jesus' name for these families.
One of our supporters, Kathy, graciously offered to share a story with us from a lady named Renee who is receiving one of IDES' sheds that you provided.
After a massive disaster like Hurricane Harvey, there are thousands of people in need of physical help and spiritual hope. Some are grieving the loss of loved ones, some are desperate after losing their homes. All of them are hurting deeply. Some may already know Jesus, but many do not.
Times such as these present a unique opportunity for the Church as the whole world watches. There are two basic responses that Jesus-followers may choose:
1) Turn in, or 2) Reach out.