Safe Place with Ruth Graham

So much rain! I am sure the dear folks in Texas wonder if it will even stop. Maybe they are identifying with Noah by now. If only we could send some of that rain to California where they are suffering a record draught.

The devastation in Texas and Oklahoma I see in the news is heartbreaking, not to mention families that lost loved ones. I lived in Texas for 6 years and I know how fast flash floods happen. Actually, my husband got caught in one coming home one afternoon. It was frightening.

My prayers go out to those trying to clean up and sort through the wreckage. It sounds like a very redundant thing to say, but, water is so wet. It gets everywhere. It’s not like dust that can be  vacuumed or swept. Or fire that turns it all to ash, as bad as that is. Water just seeps in and destroys. And if things are not properly dried out, mold and mildew develop – the devastation will continue. It’s a mess.

Events like this are overwhelming. My prayers go out to those having to deal with their loss and the clean-up.

Another loss this week that has saddened me…Josh Duggar. My oldest granddaughter has watched that show for years. It is a wonderful reinforcement of the values my daughter holds dear and tries to teach her children. A refreshing TV program against all the trash that fills the airwaves. (Not that we agree with everything the Duggars do but it’s a whole lot better than the Kardashians!)

I don’t know of the details of Josh’s transgression. But I do know sexual abuse has to be dealt with swiftly and thoroughly. I understand his parents trying to protect him and the others involved as well as the TV show – they are celebrities. And a when something like this happens you want to keep it a secret. Cover it. And there are Bible verses one can quote to support that line of thinking. But it is dangerous. We are as sick as our secrets.

We try to build safe places on shaky foundations.

Abuse indicates a deeper issue – a root cause. I am not a psychologist or counsellor but I do know this sin has tentacles that if they are not cut off will create havoc for years to come. I am concerned for his wife. Yes, she knew about it before the marriage but we tend to see things through rose-colored glasses when we are newly in love. Now that the secret is out and there is job loss and a tarnished reputation the stress will be more than enough on the marriage and the family.

Just like Texas and Oklahoma it will be a messy clean up. It will take long time. It cannot be rushed. It takes professionals who know what to look for and what to clear away. It takes understanding people to come alongside to help. The Duggars had a flood hit them. They tried to stem the tide and hold back the waters. Their efforts were not sufficient. More damage was done…but the story isn’t over. God is in the restoration business.

We need to pray for them.

Yes, sin was committed. A horrible and devastating sin. But it doesn’t have to destroy lives, yes, scar lives, but not destroy. And scars don’t heal. But they can be testimonies to God’s amazing grace. Sin doesn’t have to win. By God’s grace and mercy, can sin be forgiven. Lives rebuilt. And I pray all that has begun.

I pray for the victims. That they have or will receive professional counseling – not just quoted Bible verses and prayer by a pastor. They need an expert counselor who knows the psychological damage done but also knows the healing power of God.

Sin is an opportunity to give and show grace. Let’s be people of grace as the process continues. God created out of chaos back in Genesis chapter 1 – He is still doing it today! Amen!


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