Many things amaze me about the situation in Joplin, but the one thing that sticks out among all the rest is this…
Crisis moments turn strangers into neighbors.
- Relief organizations – primarily churches – are driving around offering residents and volunteers free food and water from the moment the sun comes up till the moment it goes down.
- Churches from far away places I’ve never heard of have organized Disaster Relief Teams and mobilized their people to show love through sweat and blood.
- Traffic flow is severely disrupted by debris and work crews but no one is upset and no one seems in a hurry.
- Everyone is outside interacting with people they’ve lived next door to for years but have never had more than a 5 minute conversation with.
I also keep thinking this thought…
Crisis moments create windows of opportunity for the Gospel.
And my prayer is that our long days of hard work will be worth far more than moving debris into a pile or turning trees into stacks of firewood. The reason we’re in Joplin is to love and serve people who feel like their entire life has collapsed right along with their physical home. We want to love the new neighbors we’re meeting every day – people like Jim and Loretta and Rob and Tina. But we also want to constantly remember that true love holds far more than a shovel and a hammer. True love always contains the Gospel.
That’s true in Joplin and it’s true wherever you are. Take the window of opportunity to show true love to a neighbor today…