Hurricane Irma. What an ordeal. Jeff and I spent the entire night crammed in a closet in our basement with two large dogs and two cats. This record-breaking storm hit our area at 6:00 Sunday evening and lasted until right around 11 the next morning. The worst of it, of course, happened between 2 – 5 am. Because storms seem to know that to make the greatest impact on our memory, they need to keep us awake all night. However, in my house, eventually, everyone fell asleep: except me. I just lay there, squished between a cement wall and a 80lb Lab. The other dog asleep on my legs, a cat on my chest, the other on my pillow and my husband sprawled out like he does in our bed.  I  listened to 90 mph winds hit our house until my cat oozed her way across my face, then I got up and sat at my husbands desk and prayed. The wind blew so hard the trees in the back yard bent sideways. We actually kept power until almost 7 am. Then with a pop, it went.

The next five days seemed an eternity. Florida in September is a lot cooler than it is in, say August, but it’s still in the 90’s. So people were miserable. Even so, we saw so many examples of Gods love; of people giving what little they had to help others. We also so a fair share of selfishness.

I heard one man tell his story: “I don’t know how, but my power came back on. My neighbor has none.”

“So did you offer to help him,” I asked.

“I will if they ask me.” The man replied. “But if they don’t ask, then I won’t help”

Neighbors on all thee sides of us have generators, but on this street it’s every man for himself. It really never bothered me until my horses needed water and I had no way to start my well pump.

Is this who I am? Do I see a need and step in or do I look the other way until someone is forced to humble themselves and ask me?

What an eye opener. Eventually we did get power, (a lot of Floridians are still with out it as I write this) and right away, this stunning conviction compelled me to offer help to whoever I saw.

Did I get water to my horses that day? A wonderful friend, Leigh Butler stepped up and in the heat and humidity, we hauled water from her house 4 miles away at 7am. Horses need a LOT of water.  I didn’t even have to ask her.

Today I sit on my couch, in air conditioning,  remembering this last week with so many examples of human failings and people showing examples of God’s love.

Lord, please keep my eyes open to need. Please spur me on to action.

But if someone who is supposed to be a Christian has money enough to live well, and sees a brother in need, and won’t help him—how can God’s love be within him? 1 John 3:17


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