Last night I heard the word victims to describe those who have persevered through tornadoes. Characterizing someone who survives a tornado as a victim is totally inappropriate. All of the victims did not survive. Their odyssey on this earth is over. They are unable to change the outcome of the tornado. They are now mourned as victims and their loss to family and friends is incalculable.

On the other hand, anyone who lived is a survivor and survivors can help themselves. They are able to move forward, to put their lives back together again. With the help of the Lord, the church, family and friends they can reach, not for what was, but for what can be. They can find the “new” normal for their lives. And we can help. We were not created to be observers. We were created to do the will of the Lord, to help the needy, to bring hope to despair.

There are many fine disaster relief organizations that can use your time (get trained and be ready to deploy), your voice (talk to your church, your friends, your neighbors) and your money (donations that go to the most affected). I am affiliated with two… UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on Relief) and CAP (Christian Appalachian Project). Join me in doing God’s work.