We find ourselves between. Hurricane Harvey has passed, leaving death and destruction, and, as I write this, Irma has already made landfall in the Caribbean. We wait to hear more about the needs to our west and the islands just hit, and we watch to see where the storm will strike next. For a moment, we are between.
Already, our United Methodist Church is working to relieve suffering in Texas and Louisiana, and already the people of Hamilton Mill UMC have responded with generosity. Just last night folks of all ages put together more than 100 flood buckets, and, since Harvey made landfall, our congregation has given more than $13,000 for the work of our United Methodist Committee on Relief. That’s wonderful, because 100 percent of those dollars will go to ease suffering and aid recovery.
So now we have time for a breath and a prayer—a breath between work already done and work still remaining, a prayer for those looking back and counting losses and others looking ahead and counting hours. In that moment between what has been and what will be, we look for answers; we seek some strength; we hang onto one another; we measure past and future.
But that’s nothing new. Life is always lived in the breath between. In every moment we respond and look ahead. In every prayer we lift up what has been and what might be. So here between storms, we name the people whose names we don’t know—those scarred by Harvey, those worried by Irma—and we give thanks for divine and human love shared and found.
In this moment between, we remember what was, is, and will be true. Prayer builds community; action born of compassion brings healing; and between storms, in the midst of storms, beyond the storms, the Holy Spirit, who sustains and empowers, is as close as the next breath.