Horrifying pictures and grim stories continue to flow out of Nepal, as the number of casualties continue to rise. There will be those who will ask, “if there is a God why does He allow such disasters and misery to happen?” I feel that is a wrong question to which there can be no meaningful answer. Others will try to assuage the situation and the victims and say, “God is trying to tell us something. There is a reason for all this destruction.” I feel that too is a wrong advice and a false counsel.
I feel the pain and suffering of the people in Nepal. I want to do something to help. I know earthquakes are a part of nature’s ways, just as typhoons are a normal part of life in the Philippines. It is tragic that people have to die and that rich historical buildings have been flattened to the ground. But that is life.
I pray that those affected by this catastrophe will have the strength and courage to pick up the pieces of their lives and recover soon and fast. I pray that there be no further injuries, specially those caused by human bumblings in the rescue and recovery efforts. I pray that people everywhere will open their hearts and resources to help and assist all the victims. I pray in the long run that we devote more resources to helping people, instead of harming or destroying them.
As I sit here, I also think what good are my prayers in alleviating all the pain and misery happening in Nepal. I realize my prayers are primarily for me. That I be a person with a heart of flesh touched and moved by the sufferings of others and willing to help in whatever way I can. If not those in Nepal at least those I see and touch everyday. That I not be a person with a heart of stone, given to cynicism and apathy and not even lifting a finger to help. If I can help by having one less uncaring person and creating one more caring person, I shall have helped make this a better place.
No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.
~ John Donne
Athirst is my soul for the living God.
~ Psalm 42
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gate
but climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber.
But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.
The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice,
as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
When he has driven out all his own,
he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him,
because they recognize his voice.
But they will not follow a stranger;
they will run away from him,
because they do not recognize the voice of strangers.”
Although Jesus used this figure of speech,
they did not realize what he was trying to tell them.
So Jesus said again, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
I am the gate for the sheep.
All who came before me are thieves and robbers,
but the sheep did not listen to them.
I am the gate.
Whoever enters through me will be saved,
and will come in and go out and find pasture.
A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy;
I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly.”