The Perfect Storm. Frankenstorm. Hurricane Sandy. No matter what you might call it, it has been a nightmare for many this week.
For those of us who live in Coastal Georgia, our first thought is that a category 1 hurricane can’t really be all that bad — a little bit of wind, perhaps some much-needed rain. Quite frankly, it normally would not even be a minor inconvenience.
But the convergence of the hurricane hitting land, a full moon and its tides, along with the cold front coming from the other direction, combined to make life miserable in the northeastern part of our country. And it will have a long-term effect, perhaps even life-changing for many.
Our hearts are moved with compassion when we see people whose lives have been hammered in such a way. Already there are those who are headed in the direction of the storm to offer aid and assistance. The Red Cross was one of the first on the scene. Because of my background, I know that there will be Disaster Relief Teams from the Southern Baptist Convention on the ground very soon. We will pray for our fellow citizens, send money and do whatever we can to bring help and hope.
There is something within the human spirit that reaches out to help others in this way. I know that there are exceptions to the rule. I am writing this early in the week, but I am certain that there have been looters out by the time you are reading. We are certainly disappointed and angered by such activity. But the majority of people want to help.
Why do you think that is the case? After all, we all are selfish to some degree. In fact, it could be said that selfishness is at the core of all sinful behavior. Still, in spite of the fact that we often “look out for No. 1,” many will offer assistance in such times. Again, the question is why?
My answer is very simple. I believe that God has placed within us a heart of compassion for others. God has built and fashioned us in such a way that we want to reach out in love. If every aspect of evolution were true, then we simply would shrug it off and say, “Well, the fittest will survive.” But instead, we care about people — and that is as it should be.
We give to those in need, not only in times of storms, but in the holiday season. I encourage you to be generous this year. Think of the needs of others. When you do that, you are acting as Jesus would act. And that always is a good thing.