“My thoughts and prayers are with you.”
I’ve typed that sentence repeatedly into messages, texts, and social media comments over the past weeks.
As pictures of hurricane and earthquake damage flood my screens, I send that simple sentiment along with a few bucks to charity. It’s the least I can do. In reality, it’s ALL I can do.
I feel helpless when I see people’s livelihoods and life’s work strewn across waterways and beaches. In many cases, everything families have built together lies beneath storm-tossed rubble. Good people are left with few options but to wait on resources to rebuild.
The media reports that parts of Puerto Rico won’t get power back for four to six months. Mexican authorities keep racing against time, pulling children out of flattened schools.
The rest of us can only pray. It seems like such a small thing.
But it’s not.
I believe the prayers sent from all over the world have made huge waves.
I’ve seen those ripples arrive in the form of a “Cajun Navy.” Neighbors, first responders, and regular folks with boats and equipment have safely flowed in to those affected on the currents of our prayers. Boxes of necessities pile into ravaged areas, while cases of potable water stack up where floods have receded. The love and strength we send in prayers encircle those affected by these tragedies as well as empowering the boots on the ground.
We have to keep praying. We don’t know who the recipients of our prayers might be. I know, though, that someone struggling is getting a cosmic hug in the form of something as a result of our prayers. It may be items as small as a granola bar or a pack of diapers or a new chain for a saw. But it’s the exact thing to lift a despairing heart at the perfect moment. Rest assured, someone is benefitting from our positive thoughts. So keep sending them.
Yes, the devastation is mind-blowing. But so is the strength of the human spirit.
God doesn’t promise to keep the storms away. He does guarantee to get us through them. He started by giving us each other. So, let’s get praying.