“ Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”
“ Through love serve one another.”
Three weeks ago, Hurricane Florence came ashore and ravaged parts of our North Carolina coastline. It was a storm that lingered and caused much damage. The weather brought hints of fall with sunny days and milder humidity, but families and businesses along the coast are still feeling the tragic impact of the storm’s destructive path. I write today because our family personally knows one young military couple in the Wilmington, NC, area who were evacuated from their home. They returned after the storm to their neighborhood devastated by the impact of the storm. Their neighborhood was one of the hardest hit by flooding. Their home did not completely flood, but it is severely damaged by the rain that came through the windows and a hole caused by a fallen tree in their roof. They are now in the process of rebuilding the entire inside of their home. Other homes in their neighborhood were almost completely flooded and people’s front yards were filled with such water it appeared as though a lake had formed. We had kept in contact with those we knew in the area and after a request for help we decided to go and volunteer. My husband and I and our two youngest daughters went last Friday to volunteer in any way that might help. Words cannot describe the vast destruction caused by the flooding. This neighborhood looked like a war zone. People’s personal property, now destroyed by water, was stacked outside of each home in piles. Some of the piles were as tall as the homes themselves.
I write today to encourage each of us to ask God for His heart to bear one another’s burdens. It is very likely it will not be a burden caused by a hurricane, but in the lives of others the burden is real. Look for ways to support those in need and be the hands and feet of Jesus in their lives. The simplest acts of service mean so much to those in need. My sister-in-law shared a story with me just yesterday. She has been able to lighten the load of a young homeschooling mom who needed a little help to encourage her young son as he learns to read. My sister-in-law now picks him up just once a week to share one hour of reading time together. It is such a simple act of kindness, yet it has meant so much!
Our short day of volunteering did not even put a dent in the tremendous amount of work still left to be done in the home of this special young couple; yet God reminded us through this family’s words of thanks we had made a difference. Our family’s willingness to go and help was a small act of kindness meant to say, “You are not forgotten.” It was a sincere expression of love to a family carrying a very large burden. Their journey is not over as they rebuild and so many others are still affected. Please keep these families in your prayers.
May we all look for ways we can help those with a specific need and help carry their burden. Whether in prayer, financially or by practical acts of service, our willingness to support them is a touch of love straight from our loving Heavenly Father.