Once again, North Dakota is affected by ravaging flood waters. It gets very discouraging to deal with a “once-every-hundred-years-flood” every year. Our hearts ache for all those whose homes are flooded, whose farm land is under water, and whose businesses are being severely affected. Our concern is not only for our Missouri Synod Lutheran brothers and sisters, but for all our neighbors, family, and friends.
These flood waters are yet another reminder as to how deeply and devastatingly fallen and broken this world is because of sin and death. St. Paul reminds us in Romans 8:22, “For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.”
And yet, later in Romans 8, St. Paul also reminds us, “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Because He is a good and gracious God, God can and does take that which sin and Satan mean for our harm and turns it around and uses it for our good.
Think of the Easter hymn that says, “The foe was triumphant when on Calvary, the Lord of creation was nailed to the tree. In Satan’s domain did the hosts shout and jeer, for Jesus was slain, whom the evil ones fear” (LSB 480). And yet, three days later, that which Satan meant for Jesus’ (and our) harm – God turned around for good. This was not only good, it was the greatest act in all the world – the salvation of the world and the reverse of sin’s devastating curse.
Satan cannot take these recent floods to destroy us. He certainly cannot use them to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus! While we (you) suffer, yet God is your strength and your salvation. Do not lose hope, dear Christians; the God of forgiveness, comfort, and eternal peace also supplies His people with protection and daily bread to sustain us throughout this earthly life.
Dear Baptized in Christ, we remember the flood in the days of Noah when the water destroyed the impenitent. However, Peter tells us, “Baptism, which corresponds to this [flood], now saves you…through the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (I Peter 2:21). God keep you in your baptismal grace through this current crisis and for all eternity!
Prayer for Time of Flood
Almighty God, merciful Father, Your thoughts are not our thoughts, Your ways are not our ways. In Your wisdom You have permitted this disastrous flood to befall us. We implore You, let not the hearts of Your people despair nor our faith fail us, but sustain and comfort us. Direct all efforts to attend the injured, console the bereaved, and protect the helpless. Bring hope and healing that we may find relief and restoration; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Prayer for Planting Season
Almighty God, You bless the earth to make it fruitful, bringing forth in abundance whatever is needed for the support or our lives. Prosper the work of farmers and all those who labor to bring food to our table. Grant us seasonable weather that they may gather in the fruits of the earth in abundance and proclaim Your goodness with thanksgiving; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
II Corinthians 4:8-10
We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.