Back in August 1992, Hurricane Andrew made landfall in Miami. I was living in Texas at the time and was glued to the news fearing for family and friends as the powerful Category 5 hurricane started its rampage.
The storm’s trajectory took it directly over my parents’ neighborhood. As the night turned into morning, I desperately tried to reach them, but the phone lines were down. Then, unexpectedly, my phone rang. It was my mom. “We’re okay,” she stated matter-of-factly, “somehow our phone is still working, but our house is destroyed.”
I felt a flood of relief knowing they were safe when mom anxiously said, “Oh no, our roof is collapsing.” The phone suddenly went dead. I was left standing there holding the phone yelling, “MOOOMMM!” It took three excruciating long days to learn my parents were okay.
As I watched Hurricane Ian smash into the West Coast of Florida, I thought and prayed for all the people in harm’s way — and of all those desperate phone calls that were about to start. I also thought about the destruction Ian caused in Cuba – including knocking out power to the entire country– and of our family and friends in Puerto Rico experiencing catastrophic flooding.
Pain and suffering have been a part of our world ever since Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden of Eden. More than just us humans, however, the Apostle Paul tells us, “Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope, the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time (Romans 8:20-22 NLT).
The age-old question remains: “Why does God allow bad things to happen?” I certainly cannot give an answer. But I can join Paul in that “eager hope” for the day of “glorious freedom.”
LOGOI’s ministry of equipping national pastors and leaders to “do His work and build up the church, the body of Christ” (Ephesians 4:12) is all the more poignant in troubled times. For the Gospel brings “glorious freedom from death and decay” to all who will believe in Jesus. What a thrill to consider God has given us over 30,000 men and women to help equip and encourage to proclaim that life changing message.
While we groan with the pains and troubles this life brings, thank you for your faithful partnership in proclaiming this “glorious freedom.” Like Paul, “We too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as His adopted children, including the new bodies He has promised us” (Romans 8:23b NLT).
P.S. There's a hopeful footnote to this story: The Thompsons not only restored their home (below), but also restored a destroyed office building nearby that became LOGOI's Miami base for more than 20 years.