This simple and often popular rally cry, “Can God? God Can!” heard in Churches across America, could not sound at a more appropriate time than in the wake of two monumental tragedies in hurricanes Harvey and Irma. It also, for me, very much depicts an internal daily struggle between my “faith” as a student of the Bible and Gospel preacher, that God can meet all our needs according to his riches and glory. The indiscriminate hurricane is not a respecter of persons (Matt. 5:45). I would love to discuss this more from a Biblical perspective and am sure another author this month will, but being true to my burden to “prepare” others to meet the challenges of this world we pass through, let me repeat the words of Benjamin Franklin “when you fail to prepare; you prepare to fail”.
The cares of life make preparing for crisis and emergency easy to ignore, and the lie of the enemy gives plenty reason to become complacent. It really does happen somewhere else, to someone else. Not here, not me, not now. Prepare? I can’t afford it, I don’t have time, I’ll never need it. Plus, if it does happen won’t the government, police, fire/EMS help me? Rescue me? Besides, I’m a Christian. So, Can God? Well, He can. But will He? Does He always? Did He in Texas? Did He in Florida? Nothing in my Bible says that God will always in every instance prevent his children (or others) from exposure to crisis or catastrophe. Jesus did command the winds and waters to obey demonstrating His power over the natural world (Matt.8). Jesus commanded the demons out of a man’s possessed body into cliff diving swine demonstrating His power over the supernatural world (Luke 8). But God’s word is replete with examples of God allowing good and faithful people to suffer trial/crisis/judgement/attack.
I know thinking of bad things (man-made or naturally occurring) happening, planning to avoid and/or preparing to respond, remaining calm, helping others, and recovering/rebuilding can be unpleasant. I also get that relying on others to serve and save is easier or that blindly assuming God will, He must, works for some. Until? But remember the man who in the storm and flood insisted that God would save him. As the winds blew and the water rose, he ignored the police request to evacuate, refused the rescue boats plea to get in, even waived off the Coast Guard helicopter proclaiming “God will save me”. During his appointed entrance interview, the man asked the creator, “I’m a believer. I waited, why didn’t you save me?” To which the almighty responded, “I sent a Police car, a rescue boat and a helicopter. What else did you want?” The man said but, I’m here. God said yes, that’s why I sent my Son (John 3:16)
Do you have a plan? For crisis, for emergency, for eternity? (2 Pt. 3:9).