Confession? I’ve checked the “stats” on my blog with almost shameful regularity…yep, sad…but true. People from around the world have read my account of May 22nd. All I have to say about that is…Holy Toledo, Batman. Seriously though, I find that fact deeply humbling…and, in the last week, it also weighs heavily on my heart. I am acutely aware that I am a very small window into an entire community of changed lives.
A community…where the death toll is still rising. I hate that term, by the way. Death toll. These were real people…with stories of love and life. They were husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, children, and friends…all cherished by someone who no longer gets to hug them or laugh at their silly jokes. These people affected the very fabric of our lives…and now the world sees them as a number. One lost life is intensely tragic…a ‘death toll’ is unimaginable. And although I’ve been profoundly affected by the events of May 22nd…my immediate friends and family are all safe. I still have my home. My dog still snores in bed next to me. My paycheck still comes with blissful regularity. And my little Honda Civic is as hearty and gas-conscious as ever. So, I have another confession. When it comes to the significance of my voice in this community of survivors…I’ve had moments of penetrating doubt. Who am I? Who am I to write about the goodness of God when by comparison, I’ve lost so little?
But here’s the thing…I’ve been praying for years that Abba would reawaken my desire to write. Because years ago I had sealed my passion for writing in a mausoleum of doubt and insecurities. And now…thanks to an EF5 Tornado…that desire is literally spilling out of my fingers. If that’s not an example of God’s goodness…then, folks, I don’t know what is.
So, this is what I’ve been chewing on this week: Yes, tragedy steals love and life…but…it also gives birth to the healing fury of God’s goodness. And as so many friends and neighbors grieve and lament the things and people that were ruthlessly ripped from their lives…I’ve been gifted with the honor of recording His Divine birth announcements.Here are a few glorious examples of complete strangers giving birth:
1. Strangers on a Roadtrip: http://www.joplinglobe.com/tornadomay2011/x1478025531/Virginia-volunteers-collect-Joplin-support-on-the-road
2. Strangers in the Body (my brother-in-law): http://www.joplinglobe.com/tornadomay2011/x1478023801/Thanks-to-strangers-kindness-daughter-reunited-with-father-s-Bible
3. Strangers in Motion: http://www.joplinglobe.com/tornadomay2011/x2088985499/Hundreds-clear-debris-in-lieu-of-annual-race
Friends...this world reminds us with dogged regularity that life really does suck…but...He is still good. Yes, He is still good.