It didn't really hit me till I watched Oprah's
coverage of Katrina's disaster. When it hit me, it hit me hard.
Let's all do something.
"If anyone has material possessions and sees his
brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be
1 John 3:17
It occurred to me: most of us could get rid of
a third of the clothes in our closets and never miss them. Based on
this, I was getting all ramped up about a campaign in our church to
send a truck load of clothes to hard-hit areas. I dug around the
Internet and found church that could use a truck full of clothes. I
even had in mind to use the stage of our church as a collection
place for the clothes--just as a visual reminder of the campaign.
Then, we read in the paper where there are a couple of others who
have arranged transportation, and it seemed smarter to just
cooperate with what they are doing.
Perhaps you could organize a campaign like
this in your church. Call it the "Third of your closet" campaign.
Perhaps there is something else you could do.
Here is the point: we can all do something.
Let's all do something. Let's don't just sit there and watch the
news and shake our heads. Let's all do something. We can't all do
the same things. We can't all do the same amount. But, we can all do
something. Let's all do something.
My Father-in-law is taking a week off to go to
Louisiana to help with construction. He is gifted along those lines.
It is something he can do. He coordinated through the North American
Mission Board's disaster relief organization.
www.namb.net/disasterrelief That may or may not be something you
can do, but we can all do something.
I have sent some money and will send some
more. Money spends. Money helps. It is something I can do. We can
all do something.
I have had 5 churches so far cancel meetings
because or Katrina. One of them, in Picayune Mississippi told me
they have turned their church in to a shelter. They have already fed
more than 27,000 people. The storm went right over their town and it
is a particularly hard-hit area. It is something they can do. It is
not easy. But it is something they can do. We can all do something.
Come to think of it, this reminds me of a
great question John Ortberg poses: Can you think of a time when God
ever called someone to do something and then said, "And good
news--this is going to be a walk in the park. It won't be hard at
all. It won't push you, stretch you or cause you any discomfort." I
can't think of any times.
The North American Mission Board has a plan
where churches can adopt a church in affected areas. Maybe that is
something your church can do. We can all do something.
I suspect this message is falling on
responsive people-probably people who have already done something.
I'd like you to do one more thing--pass this message along. Talk it
up in your Sunday School class. Let's get all hands on deck. "Many
hands lighten the load," my Dad used to say. Hold their feet to the
fire. Go around the room and ask each person to share one thing you
I'd invite you to make this your lesson for
the week. In fact, part of my "something" was to write a lesson to
help you. It is free and ready to use at
I look at images of the Astro dome and find
myself thinking, "If I were a famous singer, I'd go and entertain
those people, just to lift their spirits." I understood Rick Warren
spoke to them the other night. If I were Oprah, I'd give them a two
hour talk on how we can make it through the storms of life. I
understand Oprah has been through a few storms herself. I could go
on and on thinking about what I could do if I were a famous person.
But, I am not a famous person. What I need to think about what I can
do. There is always the temptation to spend time thinking of what we
would do if we were someone else rather than thinking about what I
In addition to material things and money,
people need love. They need to be listened to. They need us to offer
the hospitality. They need a hug. Maybe it is something you can do.
Refugees are spreading out across the whole
country. We have some here in Las Cruces, New Mexico. You may have
some in your town as well. Love them in Christ's name. Maybe that is
something you can do. Maybe not. It is OK. But, let's all find
something to do.
There is a lot of talk in the news about
the idea that the government did not do enough, or did not do it
quickly enough. I don't know if it is true or not. I know it is a
huge area of devastation--some 900,000 square miles. It is not
surprising that it would take a while to get help to all those
areas. I hope the next story is not about what the government did or
did not do. I hope it is what people--especially God's people--did
do. We can all do something.
There is much that we can't do. Thousands of
lives have been lost. No amount of money or work or love will bring
them back. But, there is much we can do. Let's all do what we can
do. Let's all do something.