Rise Up

The alarm startled me awake from a deep sleep. It was somewhere around 1am. “A Tornado warning has been issued for your area, please take cover immediately!”  I got up and turned on the TV to see exactly what was happening. For the next two hours I watched as different parts of our community were highlighted as hot spots for tornado activity. I began to text friends who appeared to be in harms way making sure they were safe and praying for their protection.

Hours later I was in the coffee shop when Darrel walked in soaked to the bone. His camp had been completely saturated with heavy rains and everything he had was ruined. “If I wasn’t a big man I’d bawl like a baby.”  Water was literally dripping off of him. I sent a request through social media asking folks to help him and immediately people began to respond. I was blown away by the people wanting to help a man they had never met before.

I’ve been reflecting today at how crazy life has been in our little corner of the world lately. Wild fires, kids killed in a bus wreck, mall shootings, an entire town full of childhood memories just two hours up the road destroyed by fire, tornados and now flash floods. It almost seems like I can hear a collective moan in my world, a cry of “uncle” from the masses. When is enough, enough?

That was my prayer to God today, “how much more Lord?” So many people I know seem to be hurting so badly right now, so disappointed, so fearful and overwhelmed.  Then out of no where this verse in Romans came to mind:

“For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.”

‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:19‬ ‭NLT‬‬

With that reminder came what seemed to be an answer to my prayer. It was as if He was saying to me, all of this is happening so my true children will be revealed. Not the ones who say they are mine but have nothing to do with me. No, the ones who truly know me, who reflect my heart, my character, the crisis and tragedy you see will reveal who truly belongs to me.”

Suddenly I was overwhelmed with conviction. This isn’t my moment to complain and criticize what I don’t know or understand. This is my moment to rise up and identify myself as who I am, who I’m meant to be, a child of God.

That’s what happened today in Darrel’s case. True children of God rallied, it was a “rise up” moment for them. Clothes, sleeping bags, tents, you name it. Darrel isn’t an isolated case. There are people all around us who are eagerly awaiting the true Children of God to rise up and speak hope to their hopelessness. To comfort those who mourn and care for those who are broken.

Look I know things are hard right now all over the world. But I’m calling you out  Son of God, Daughter of God. I’m daring you to put aside your doubts, discouragements and disenfranchisements with the world around you and to rise up and show the world what Jesus looks like. There’s no better time than right now.

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