Viewing the destruction left by the tornado in Joplin, MO one can feel helpless (I know I do). Into that helplessness comes the still small voice, indeed, the voice that calmed the storm, “you can always pray.”
You may not be in a position to leave everything and go and help, but you can pray, right now, in the place you are, with all the love and energy you can gather and put into that prayer. You can, from the comfort of your home and community still intact, send your donation to relief agencies (like Episcopal Relief and Development) who are in contact with people “on-the-ground” in Joplin offering aid and comfort, healing and hope.
While looking for inspiration I found an inspired prayer already sent, and ready to be sent again, to the heart of God for the benefit of others and an encouragement to our efforts. Here is the prayer:
Special Prayer for Tuscaloosa and all tornado victims for May 1 2011
God of Creation,
Your ways are mysterious to us. We know that we were created by You out of love, as part of the whole of creation, called into being by Your voice, and You pronounced “It is good.”
The earthquake long ago broke open the tomb; the earthquake a few months ago wrecked havoc upon Japan and caused a terrible tsunami. You spoke to Job out of the whirlwind; but the whirling winds have blown away Tushka and Tuscaloosa over the past few weeks. The floods subsided and allowed the ark to land, for life to re-enter the earth; the floodwaters are rising in New York, and North Dakota continues to recover.
God, Your Creative power is still at work, in the calming winds, in the receding waters, in the settling earth. When the chaos of earthquakes, floods and tornadoes shatters our lives, Loving God, You are at work in our brothers and sisters who come to our aide, who bring healing and hope. When the violence of the world drives in a wedge, Loving God, You are at work in the peacemakers, in the caregivers, in our neighbors who love us, even when we are strangers.
Mighty God, You call us into action to be Living Hope for the world. You have called us to love our neighbor as ourselves, to lift up those in need, through prayer and the sharing of our time, talents, finances, and our very selves. Guide us in the best ways to be Living Hope for those who are heartbroken, for those who are mourning, for those who have lost everything. Help us to be Your servants, to be the Living Hope this world needs. Through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Friend, who gave His life for us and calls us to be the Hope for the World, we pray always. Amen.
Please join me (and so many others) in prayer. Written by The Rev. Mindi, this prayer is my prayer, and I hope your prayer, as we become “Living Hope” in the time of crisis in Joplin, MO.
Rev-o-lution: http://tinyurl.com/3bg22tn (Rev Mindi’s blog)
Image: LA Times images from Joplin, MO