Globally and nationally, life continues to be difficult. Our hearts continue to break over the plight of Afghanistan, nearly twenty years after 9-11.
Tonight, a hurricane approaches the southern United States nearly 16 years to the day that Hurricane Katrina caused over 1,800 deaths and an estimated $125 billion in damage. Together with Hurricane Harvey (2017), Katrina remains the coastlines costliest tropical cyclone ever recorded. As you read this, Hurricane Ida is barreling toward the New Orleans shore.
Yet another earthquake rocked Haiti, killing over 2,200 people. More than 14,000 firefighters battle the fires raging in California, charring 750,000 acres of land.
In Afghanistan, a suicide bomber detonated an explosive Thursday at Kabul airport, slaughtering more than 180 people, including 13 American soldiers.
As I write this, COVID-19 continues to embed itself into our global community, hospitalizing people all over the US and other countries. To date, over 215 million people have reportedly had COVID-19, with 4.5 million dying from the virus (or complications from it). More than 190 million people have recovered from COVID. Over the last year and a half, we have learned that COVID affects people in numerous different ways, with some folks experiencing mild symptoms while others die from the virus that is believed to have originated in China sometime in October-November 2019.
Today, my coworkers and I celebrated the life of another coworker’s wife. COVID cut her life short. However, the impact she had on thousands of lives remains, leaving behind a powerful legacy of godliness and redemption. I am reminded that we each can choose how we respond to life’s hardships. I am also reminded of how vital it is to have a relationship with Jesus. In Christ, we find reconciliation and the promise of an abundant life in the eternal presence of our Creator. Scripture teaches us that while we were yet sinners Jesus died for us so that we would not perish but have eternal life. We who were once far off have been brought near to God through the shed blood of Christ. All of our sins are forgiven. All who are broken are made whole.
No, the Christian life doesn’t mean life will be trouble-free. It won’t. That’s not the world we inhabit. Tomorrow, the storms are sure to come. The earthquakes, wildfires, killing of innocents, disease, and devastation will continue. However, in Christ, we can know what it is to experience joy amidst the devastating pain we experience on a daily basis. This is our temporary home. Jesus has built each of us a mansion in the presence of God our Father in Heaven.
So let me ask you: Will you trust in the Lord today?
The Devotional Guy™