Posts Tagged ‘NashvilleFlood’

Some musings on prayer and taking action…

I came across this status on Facebook today: “_____ hopes that people’s prayers fuel their actions and that their actions fuel the praise of God. It’s hard to eat your prayers…”   The post was in reference to Nashville flooding, from someone whose family lost everything.  I definitely understand the reasoning behind the statement.  It got me thinking… it is so easy to say “I’ll pray for you” or “I’ll pray for those people”.    It is much, much harder at times to do something about it and put those prayers into action.  I’d like to think if I was living in Nashville right now I’d be helping out with the cleanup efforts. The reality is, it would take some work on my part to be able to do that work. It would involve finding childcare, or finding an opportunity to help an individual where a child could tag along… or even finding an opportunity to help someone in my home. I have seen Facebook statuses of people offering their homes and playrooms for people who have been displaced to bring kids to play (which I thought was a great idea… maybe it doesn’t help everyone, but to displaced moms whose kids have lost all of their toys and are living in shelters… it’s a big deal.  I’d be willing to bet they would leave with a few more toys as well).   Right now it seems like finding a way to help out… regardless of your situation… is pretty easy.  I just also know how easy it is to say “I’ll pray for you” and then not even do that, much less anything else.

On the flip side… I was responding to a blog post about the Oklahoma tornadoes and typed, “I’ll pray for all of you”. I almost typed, “I wish I could do more”. I didn’t — because of this:  I immediately thought, “By saying, ‘I wish I could do more’, am I saying that praying isn’t doing much?”  I believe that prayer is powerful.  I don’t believe that praying is “doing nothing”.  I know that God can do much more than I can ever do.

I also know that he uses people and community and his church to do many of those things.  We are often the way he puts prayers into action.

So… prayer is powerful… and so is getting out of your head and helping others.

I guess I needed to type all of that out to reconcile the two ideas… and thought I’d share.

What do you think?  Do you often pray more than you “do”?  Do you take action for yourself (or others) more than you have faith that God will privide?  Do you see yourself as part of that provision?  How do you balance prayer with taking action… or when knowing when you taking action is the answer to another’s prayer?

Thankful Thursday

I debated whether to write a thankful post today. I have spent the week very grateful for some areas of life, including life itself. I have also spent the week feeling ungrateful and overwhelmed by responsibilities, information, and emotional upheaval. It’s the little things that add up… allergies, fatigue from fighting with asthma that comes from those, dealing with a willful 4 year old, watching my house be overtaken by *stuff*. And yet… it is the little and not so little things that I am grateful for. So… here’s my gratitude list for the week:

  • I am grateful for Tori at This Journey Called Life, specifically for this post. I’ve been feeling like a much less than perfect person lately… struggling with how people see me (while I know I am should not be judged as a person by the behavior of my child or the cleanliness of my house… I often feel I am, whether I truly am or not).
  • I am grateful for life. I am grateful that my family is safe, both here and in Nashville. I spent last Saturday morning camped out in the bathroom with my 4-year old listening to tornado sirens which continued until late that night… and I’m not one to usually run for cover at storm warnings.   I’ve spent the days since then captivated and heartbroken by images of loss across Tennessee, and particularly heartbroken by the devastation in Nashville and its surrounding areas, which I called home for 20+ years.  So many cars, houses, family members, businesses and the jobs that go with those businesses were lost.  Many who lost belongings and homes don’t have flood insurance… because areas that no one (including the insurance companies) thought would flood, did.  I’m grateful for having a house to clean today… even though I hate cleaning it.
  • I’m grateful for what I’ve seen over the last few days of people willing to reach out and help each other… whether they are passing along information or donations of any kind.
  • I’m thankful for the ongoing reminders I have gotten this week that what matters is “keeping on keeping on” (as my husband used to say) What matters is just to keep going. What matters in fighting evil and tragedy in life is for the good to keep pushing at it. It is so easy for me to get discouraged that all I am trying to do in life doesn’t make a difference (okay, I don’t feel like I am doing much at the moment, but it was a frequent feeling during my career in social work and counseling). I’ve been reminded in several ways this week to keep working for good… and somehow, even if I can’t see it, it will make a difference.  (And that is not at all flood-related)
  • I’m thankful for living in a country where I can pray to my God in public. (I’m also thankful for living in a country where others can do the same… or not… because giving them a choice means I have one as well)
  • I’m thankful that a friend of mine is coming in later tonight… and thankful she can get here because that was looking a little uncertain a few days ago.
  • With Mother’s Day coming up… I am even more thankful for my little boy. Even though he has kept me exasperated this week and feeling like a parenting failure. He always comes out with something adorable or runs over for a hug just when I feel I’m at my wit’s end.
  • I’m thankful for air conditioning! It is getting hot here, and it is only May! I’m thankful that it is looking like we’ll have a/c back in the car sometime soon as well… it’s been a while and it will be so nice to go through a summer with air in the car.
  • I’m thankful for tears. It’s been one of those weeks with a lot of them shed. But crying has a way to make you feel better too… I’m not quite sure how that works but I am grateful for it.
  • I’m thankful for all of my readers… because if I didn’t have people reading I probably wouldn’t have written this post.  Writing this post was therapeutic… and I am in a much better mood than when I started writing it.
  • I’m thankful for autosave on WordPress! My computer shut down when I had written 95% of this post… and it was still there when I came back. 🙂

What are you thankful for this week?

Also, I just decided to link up with Kerri @ Mommy4Him… visit there to see some more Thankful Thursday posts!

Tennessee

I tried to do a “Wordless Wednesday” and just show pictures and video… but I couldn’t be quiet! 🙂

I do want to note that the quotes from this video are from this article.

Flooding has been all across Tennessee… in Millington (just outside of Memphis), Dyersburg, Nashville and its suburbs and many places in between.  The Naval base in Millington flooded and no one except essential personnel is being allowed in.  Dyersburg just had the largest flood they have had in over 70 years.  Jackson is devastated as well.  I may go back and add pics from the other places later… but saw this today and had to post.

Nashville: 

While you are praying in the National Day of Prayer tomorrow… remember everyone trying to come to terms with the past few days across Tennessee.  I’ve had a hard time this week just watching images of my hometown… even knowing that everyone I know there is safe.  Many were not so fortunate.  I’ve already talked to one person from Millington who lost everything.  I’m feeling pretty helpless right now… all I can do is spread the word.