I came part of the way home from Spring Valley on Sunday afternoon. The entire trip was through extremely heavy rain. Sometimes I had to pull over and stop because I couldn’t see. In those rain storms I listened to the developing tragedy in Oklahoma and was constantly reminded that it was the same weather system that was bringing rain on me, that was bringing the tornadoes to Oklahoma.
When I got home the next day I found out that the little town of Crystal where St. John’s church is located was being flooded and a great deal of water was coming in from the North, also part of this storm system. When I went to Crystal I was informed that a dam several miles to the North was a concern and that the entire town of Cavalier might be evacuated.
About that same time I received calls worrying about the folks at Cavalier and if they were doing OK. It is amazing how folks respond in these situations as we are seeing in Oklahoma. The town was evacuated and a shelter was set up in the town of Drayton where Trinity Lutheran Church is located and several of our members offered to put up folks if needed. So far there are not many people in the shelter which is normal. Estimates are that about ten percent of those that are evacuated will be in a shelter and that seems to be a case in Oklahoma too.
The weather system that brought the tornado brought the rain. There are Bible verses about that.
A man by the name of Rob Morris from Moore Oklahoma, and an editor of the Moore Monthly Magazine spoke on a local radio station in Minneapolis the other day and gave a wonderful witness to God in the tragedy. He said that God is always in control especially when things seem to be the worst. He said that even in the worst of times, a time will come when God’s mercy and grace will come shining through. It was a wonderful testimony and gave voice to what we have always called the theology of the cross.
Cowpers old hymn has been rattling around in my brain this morning.
Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take; The clouds ye so much dread Are big with mercy and shall break In blessings on your head.
Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, But trust Him for His grace; Behind a frowning providence He hides a smiling face.
His purposes will ripen fast, Unfolding every hour; The bud may have a bitter taste, But sweet will be the flower.
Blind unbelief is sure to err And scan His work in vain; God is His own interpreter, And He will make it plain.