by Brenda B. Taylor
I spent the first week of September watching the devastating effects of Hurricane Harvey on Houston and surrounding areas on television. Several of my relatives were caught in the throws of Harvey’s destructive rains. My brother had four feet of toxic flood water in his home. Every home in his neighborhood was flooded.
I traveled to Spring, Texas and stayed with my son while I helped my brother in Kingwood salvage whatever he could rescue. Not much could be saved—only those items made of metal or no-porous materials. My niece and I washed the items in disinfecting water with bleach, rinsed and dried, and placed them in containers to be stored for the home when all is renewed. All the while my heart was breaking for the victims of the devastating flood in the Houston area.
Images of homes with the owners’ ruined possessions piled high along curbs waiting for the FEMA garbage truck to take them are imprinted on my mind. I am reminded how short and fleeting life is. We should make the most of each moment and never miss an opportunity to say, “I love you,” or give someone a big hug.
Jesus loves us and when he walked the earth, reminded us often just how much. The scriptures are full of His ‘love’ sayings. He knew the brevity of time and how important expressing our love and appreciation was to others. Some of us aren’t all that loveable, either, but He loves in spite of our shortcomings.
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 NLT
“for the Father himself loves you dearly because you love me and believe that I came from God.” John 16:27 NLT
I witness the depth of caring people express for those who are hurting as I watched the ones who spent their time, resources, and efforts rescuing victims of the storm. Stories abound about the rescues and saving lives.
“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.” John 13:34 NLT
Although the storm raged, peace could be found in Jesus. He was with us through the storm.
“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33