NT Tuesday: Superstorm Sandy

Superstorm Sandy Fifth Avenue Chapel 01

Fifth Avenue Chapel, 5th Avenue & B Street, Belmar, NJ


As the northeastern US is recovering from Hurricane Sandy (or Superstorm Sandy), I can’t help but think about the reality of the “one another” verses. Over the last few months, we’ve looked at a number of verses from the New Testament where the Christian is instructed to behave in a certain way towards other Christians.

I have suggested since the beginning, that these “one another” verses are, in fact, New Testament principles. And, as New Testament principles, they should govern how we relate to one another and react to certain circumstances.

So, with that being said – how did we, as believers, do in response to Sandy? Sadly, I am not sure how to respond to it because, to my shame, I really haven’t been able to participate in a significant way in helping others. It’s been frustrating, but it’s also been enlightening.

Superstorm Sandy Belmar NJ Fifth Avenue Chapel 02

5th & B St., Belmar, NJ Looking West

Just a little bit of background. My wife and I live north of Allentown. Our house suffered very minor damage during the storm (just to the exterior of the home) and we never (yes, never) lost power. Before we could phone some folks from the chapel, my family moved in. By the end of Tuesday, we had 12 people and three dogs living in our home. (We did have a young man from our assembly who moved in on Sunday). Needless to say, we were “occupied” with that. But, doesn’t an extreme situation require extreme measures? Yes!

There were numerous folks from the meeting in Allentown, PA and a multitude of dear brothers and sisters in NJ and NY who needed basic things – heat, power, food, gas, etc. What could have or should have we done and why didn’t we do it? It’s easy to blame something outside of ourselves – the assembly, the situation, etc. But, part of looking at these “one another” verses is to emphasize that we have an obligation as individual Christians to behave in a certain way.

Superstorm Sandy 8th and Main  Belmar NJ Looking East

8th & Main, Belmar, NJ Looking East

So, what could have or should have we done? My wife and I spoke about this recently and came up with a few things that we should have done. (Just for further clarification – we are currently on a trip to Man O Way, Bahamas where we have the privilege of teaching the Word of God for three weeks to the saints there so we can’t do much about it now). So, from that stand point, perhaps we are more in tune and better mentally prepared the next time this happens.

But the question of “why” didn’t we do more is an interesting one. I think it goes to the heart of what has happened to many of us – certainly to me. We have become complacent as it pertains to our obligations to each other – we don’t think about it, because we expect that the government will help out when someone needs help or the “assembly” will do it.

Superstorm Sandy Belmar NJ 4th and Cst Looking East

4th & C St., Belmar, NJ Looking East

When will we realize that the assembly is a body of individual believers and if we keep saying things like “the assembly should have done this or that” what we really are saying is that “the believers other than me should have done something about it.”

What I have learned is that I am not a very good “brother’s keeper”. Hopefully Sandy has taught us all what it means to be brothers and sisters in Christ and what it means to “love one another” (John 13:34-35) in a biblical and tangible sense.

Until next week, fulfill YOUR ministry!





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