Posts Tagged ‘helping people

02
Sep
13

Living the love of God instead of just talking about it

As I watched the “Secret Millionaire” show last evening, which featured Tri Coastal Community Outreach which I have worked closely with for seven years, I was struck again by how ignorant many Christian denominations are when it comes to charity. For reasons that escape me, there is a belief among some branches of our faith that it is a bad thing to help people in any way except preaching the Bible to them. I believe this is not only shortsighted but also in direct opposition to what Jesus said in the parable recorded in Matthew 25:34-46.

When someone has been beaten down by life’s storms, the last thing they need (usually) is someone to slam a Bible over their head and tell them to believe. When someone has seen their home washed away, their job dissolved, their family split apart or their physical body break down; the last thing they need to hear is that they are a sinner and all these things happened to them because they sinned.

When I dropped everything in May of 2006 and took off for the Gulf Coast to try and help those who were in great need after Hurricane Katrina, I had one goal in mind and that was to be of service. I of course had my Bible with me and studied it faithfully, but I did not embark on my journeys to be an evangelist but rather to be a servant.

Many times I found myself loading or unloading trucks in 99 degree heat, tearing out rotten drywall in a mold infested house, running all over three states trying to find supplies when none were to be found and numerous other menial tasks. My greatest joy came when I was able to be a part of a distribution day at one of the outreach centers when food and other supplies were passed out.

I remember vividly handing a package of toilet paper to an older lady at a distribution center one day. I had to drive nearly 100 miles to find that paper due to shortages. Upon receiving the package, the woman broke down in tears and thanked the Lord for His faithfulness over and over again. How can helping someone SEE the love of God in manifestation be wrong?

When I wasn’t actually helping people I was traveling across the United States trying to present the needs I had witnessed to churches, ministries and other groups who claimed they wanted to help people. For the most part my appeals landed on deaf ears. Time and again I heard the same excuses which were that these people needed to help themselves and just “giving them things” did not help them rebuild their lives.

If more Christian preachers and teachers spent less time talking and more time putting on their work clothes and helping someone rebuild their home, clean their yard or find supplies to stay alive; more people would come to the Lord by seeing the love of God in manifestation than just hearing about it on Sunday morning. Those who live their faith provide a far greater testimony to the faith than those who simply want to talk about it.

Advertisements
14
Sep
08

Who Am I and Why Do I Write about Ike and other Hurricanes; My open letter to YOU

Dear Friend,

With grateful heart I rejoice that Hurricane Ike was not worse than it was. A disaster of epic proportions was averted by probably 12 hours and 20 miles. Yes, at the rate Ike was strengthening, if it had another 12 hours over water there is ample evidence to suggest it would have been a category 4 storm instead of a category2/3 one. A wobble to the west would have changed the storm surge to have done far more damage than it did.

I am no scientist. I am no meteorologist. I am no one you ever heard of or ever will. I deliberately work in obscurity and under no circumstances want my true identity used. I believe strongly that what is important is the message and not the messenger. I believe too much emphasis is placed on academia and too little on common sense and logic.

My life is a gift from God for the blessing of His people. Anything and everything I can do or give on behalf of others is my life’s goal and intent. I have no advanced degrees from prestigious institutions of higher learning. I have no doctorate, master or even bachelor’s degrees. I have a worthless Associate degree in theology plus many years of devoted service to God and His people.

I have studied weather since I was a child. I have watched tornadoes form and been in more than one. I have spent hours studying radars and satellite images just to help someone know what to do weather-wise in a situation. I have my trusted sources for technical information, but I basically trust my instinct based on logic, patterns and principle vs. model runs.

I have no business other than to do what my Lord places on my heart to do. I am promoting no one and no cause in particular. I do not sell weather related materials, and in fact, I do not sell anything other than clothing on eBay. I have no agenda, hidden or otherwise. I am a simple man who only desires to find a way to help people gain a better understanding of life, weather, disasters and most of all God.

Many months ago, out of the blue I had a strong premonition that the Houston area was going to deal with a major hurricane this year. There was nothing I could do other than study the area, its history and lay of the land. I wrote a few pieces dealing with how a huge hurricane hitting the Houston ship channel would be a major disaster. Other than that, I have waited patiently for the fulfillment of what I was shown, no doubt by my Lord.

When the flurry of tropical disturbances started a month ago, I decided to start posting on a regular basis regarding them. There is so much ignorance and misunderstanding among people regarding weather and especially hurricanes and tornadoes. When it became apparent that Ike was heading for the Houston area, I saw my mission as one of helping to condense and disseminate the volumes of technical data being stated about the storm, its track and intensity levels.

When it became apparent that Ike was going to be a massive monster storm, I assumed the reason God had pre-warned me was so that I could try and help someone. In my many posts on Ike, I simply was trying to convey the magnitude of the situation in enough time to allow those who could and wanted to leave to do so. Drawing upon my experiences working with Katrina victims, I simply tried to tell you folks what I knew and in such a way as to hopefully help.

Yesterday and last night were very hard for me. My heart so wanted to reach out and comfort those who were huddled in fear and hold those who were breaking under the stress of a very mean storm. I, along with everyone else who studies hurricanes, was sure there would be thousands of casualties from Ike and Galveston pretty much destroyed. The data showed what should happen. As it turns out, it simply showed what COULD happen. Thank God it didn’t happen as bad as was feared.

Now that the storm is over I return to my normal frustrating life of trying to locate help for small independent charities who have no access to the huge warehouses where supplies are stored and no access to AID MATRIX the clearing house for disaster services and groups part of VOAD. My mission is not to find help for a place like Houston, for there are plenty of well supplied groups taking care of both Houston and Galveston.

No, my mission is to find help for places such as Cameron, New Iberia and Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana. These are locations which will (and already have after Gustov) fall through the cracks and receive basically no help from anyone. I am sure there are similar places along the upper coast of Texas also. I fight for the underdog in all things. That is my life and ministry.

In the days ahead, as my coverage of hurricane Ike winds down; I will be zeroing in on the needs in those places the media never go. I will share what is REALLY going on in the little communities who are always forsaken in huge disasters. I will offer avenues of giving, sharing and prayer to anyone with a heart to want to help the “underdogs” and the forsaken.

Thank you for allowing me to share a bit of my heart, whether it is one or a hundred of you who read this. All I can do is give the best I can and pray God opens doors to handle the rest. God’s richest blessings to you.