October 18, 2022

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Even the reporters choked up. That monster tornado tore up in Moore, Oklahoma, tore at our hearts: houses gone, neighborhoods gone, schools gone, children - gone.

Even though it was several years ago, I still remember the pictures. People were wandering the streets "like zombies," it said, trying to figure out where their house was. Parents waited in the mud, looking for some shred of hope that their child was somehow alive beneath the rubble of that school. Children were in shelters, wondering if they'd ever see their parents again. I'll tell you, the photos, the stories, and the video images defied words. Some of them struck a pretty deep chord in my heart.

Like the team from Joplin, Missouri, who hurried there to help people in a way that only they could. See, a few years before, it was part of their town that vanished in one of the deadliest twisters ever. They know how having your world erased in a moment feels.

I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Your Safe Room in Your Storm."

It's strange isn't it? The worst things that happen to us become the compassion and the comfort that we have to give to other wounded people. Those who've been hurt become heroes of healing for others who are bleeding. As the Bible says in 2 Corinthians 1:4, "We can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God." Somehow our pain has meaning when we use it to rebuild someone else's life. I call it crud-entials. How the crud of your life qualifies you to help a hurting world.

I was touched, too, by the directive given by the rescuers at the leveled Plaza Towers Elementary School. Knowing there were children in that rubble, the first responders asked everyone to just be quiet, "So we can listen for voices." That's what I want to be better at; stopping the chatter so I can listen for the voices of people in trouble. They're all around us, if we have ears to hear their cries. They've been buried by one of life's violent storms. It's easy to miss them if we're running so fast we run right by them. God, help me listen for their voices.

Now the stories of the hero teachers there surfaced on every newscast. Like the teacher at Briarwood Elementary who knew what the approaching tornado could do to those children she loved. So she told them, "We're going to line up our desks, get under them and play 'Worms.'" And they sang real loud - a little song I sang as a kid. "Jesus loves me, this I know." It's good to know when your world is falling down around you isn't it? The roof of the school ended up on top of their desks and they were OK.

Then there were the teachers who threw their bodies over their students' bodies; abandoning themselves, risking their lives to save their children. For me, that's the man whose sacrifice has changed my life. "Jesus loves me, this I know."

I'm still thinking about the woman who got her kids from the soon-to-be demolished school just in time, and reached her home just in time to get everyone into their recently-built safe room. It was all that was left when the storm passed by. I loved what she said about rebuilding her house. "I'll build it around the safe room." That's a good idea. Not just for a house, but for a life.

There are so many sudden storms aren't there, so many life-changers that are beyond our control? We need a safe room where the storm that takes so much can't take you; an unshakeable eternity, an unloseable love.

Well in our word for today from the Word of God in Hebrews 6:19, God says, "We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure." The Bible's talking about Jesus. He's my one Safe Place. Storms have taken their toll to be sure, but I'm OK, because He never let me go. I know He never will, because He hung on a cross for my sin and for yours.

See, these news stories remind us of how fragile life is, how much a storm can change things. Jesus offers you today, not a religion, but a relationship that anchors you forever. So, I want to invite you to join me at our website, where you can see how to begin a relationship with Him today. Go to ANewStory.com and you know what you'll find there? The one anchor that never moves.

            

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Ron Hutchcraft Ministries
P.O. Box 400
Harrison, AR 72602-0400

(870) 741-3300
(877) 741-1200 (toll-free)
(870) 741-3400 (fax)

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