How Great Thou Part

There is a contradiction to Hurricane Harvey’s torment.

The images which blend the horrific and the inspiring.

The portraits of both professional and ordinary heroes:

pexels-photo-261184Linking arms to rescue motorists

Hugging tear soaked victims

Risking life  for even four legged loves

Carrying the elderly to safety

Tirelessly loading and delivering supplies

And more.

In some small way, it eases the suffering of not only those rescued but of those who can barely stand to witness their pain and heartache.

I rely on my faith to lift me up not take others down.

And every single human being who waged the waters of Harvey is a testimony to these words.

Much has been said about Joel Osteen this past week.

Sadly, there are times when stories do not get reported in their entirety and later appear as simply footnoted corrections.

Regardless, the quick judgments remind of the moments which preceded the loss of my mother.


I sat with a dear family friend and bemoaned my regrets.

I devotedly adored my mother but I lived farther away which led my siblings to do much more for her. Admittedly, I had let her down. This very humble and holy woman would have none of it. Instead, she took my hand and assured me that we all serve at the time we are called and my time would come.

In the moments and days after losing our beloved mother, my exhausted siblings could finally give in to their fatigue and the youngest child took a place of leadership I had never known. I planned everything as their wounds could finally be tended and I found a strength I had never known existed.

One of the greatest blessings of crisis would be the allowance of a variety of people to step forward at different times with alternate offerings and gifts.

Here are 3 Reasons Not to Judge Joel Osteen:



Money does not define a person.

Quite the contrary, there are good and bad people on both sides of the dollar.

What money may do is exaggerate who an individual originally is. A generous person may be far more giving and a selfish one less accommodating.

Character attacks based solely on money are somewhat hypocritical as there will always be one person doing better and another doing worse. Therefore, count on the fact another will need more than you or less than you. Does this make you a bad person? The answer – no.

Prosperity preaching is hopeful and positive and the fact remains that just as all people learn differently, so do people receive differently in times of distress.

One may do well with fire and brimstone while another who can’t forgive themselves may need a message of inspiration.

One form of preaching is not bad while the other is good, but rather they are different ways to spread God’s word.



In the wake of overwhelming loss and sadness, the intent should be to continue to lift one another up.

This would be the contrast of religion versus spirituality.

Religion tends to have a lot to say while spirituality spills out of us and onto others. 

It puts us either literally or metaphorically in the wading waters of Harvey which means time is spent donating dollars, food items, praying or physically being present.

There are no races or religions, quite miraculously those temporarily shed to cast a light on our primary commonality of the human condition.

Tragedy brings all communities together because a crisis demands concentration rather than criticism.



Marathon news coverage is extensive and exhaustive and breaking news is just that – moment to moment.

Anyone in the media today can attest to the challenges associated with a rapidly paced digital world. Reporters work hard. Their jobs may appear glamorous but they equally as demanding. They often have to write their own stories, operate the camera, and much more.

These reporters are working round the clock to report and raise awareness to help those in need.

In crisis and fast-breaking stories, they are often the first to tell you that this is the information they now have on hand and it may change or more information may follow.

There is always the ‘aftermath.’ 

And they diligently report that as well.

Reserve judgment the truth always prevails in the end.


I rely on my faith to lift me up not take others down.

I continue to be inspired by the survivors and rescuers of Harvey.

And their example of leaning on the good despite the bad.

Joel Osteen preaches a similar message of hope.

Our faith should bond us not break us.

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(Photo courtesy of Pexels)

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