I first saw the question online last week – “where was God during Hurricane Harvey?”
I can’t take credit for the great answer I saw from someone (I don’t remember who wrote the blog, or I would give them credit) – God was present in His people, who were rescuing the stranded, bringing relief supplies to those in need, and coming in to the midst of the chaos following the hurricane to help however they could.
We are the Body of Christ in this world, and…
- Wherever there is darkness, we go to bring the light;
- Wherever there is pain, we go to bring healing;
- Wherever there are captives, we go to set them free;
- Wherever there is turmoil, we go to bring peace;
- Wherever there is hunger and thirst, we go to bring food and drink;
- Wherever there is spiritual hunger and thirst, we go to bring the Bread of Life and the Living Water; and
- Wherever there is boredom and lack of purpose, we go to bring salt.
When the world asks “where was God when…” the answer must always be that God is present in His people, who do His work. God is present in His people, who are salt and light; God is present in His people, who love their neighbors and their enemies; God is present in His people, whose God-given vision can bring solutions to impossible situations; God is present in His people, whose self-sacrifice and service to others is like that of Jesus, who came not be served but to serve others.
You see, when a storm hits, it’s not an “act of God.” It’s not God’s wrath being poured out on the earth. A storm is a storm. It’s a result of weather patterns in a sinful, fallen world.
Where is God in the storm?
God is present in the refreshing rain, not in the torrential flooding.
God is present in the air we breathe, but not in the tornadic winds.
God is present in the deep blue sea, but not in the chaos of the storm surge.
God’s power is displayed in the might of a weather pattern, but God is not present in the destruction that is brought by the storm.
God is present, most of all, within us, His people.
Let us live our lives as God’s representatives in these difficult times, as Paul instructed us:
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. 2 Corinthians 5:17-20a (NIV)