THE SERVANT GENERAL
ABOVE THE FLOOD
the aftermath of Ondoy, the nation is in collective mourning
for the disaster that has befallen it. Many have lost possessions,
even their homes, and have inadequate resources with which
to rebuild their lives. Mired in the problems of the present,
many wonder what the future holds.
usual, it is not all bleak. There is a silver lining in every
cloud. We have witnessed how the nation has also responded
to help those afflicted. Here already is one blessing. The
disaster has been a great opportunity to bring out the best
in the hearts of concerned citizens. People have opened their
hearts and their wallets to give. People have set aside their
other concerns and priorities to help those in need.
challenges are great. How to rebuild lives. How to prevent
similar disasters. How to take care of the poor among us.
reflection will happen, and that is good. We are often so
caught up in the swirling world around us that we fail to
consider what is really important in life.
most important, of course, is to be mindful of God and to
live our lives in and for Him. God is in control of nature's
forces. God has a wonderful plan for our lives and we just
need to know such plan and align our lives with it. Suffering
brings purification and helps align us with God's plan. We
need to see what God is doing, even as we are unable to grasp
the grandeur and majesty of His divine actions.
today's reading, we look to the consolation Jerusalem extended
to her afflicted children. "My children, bear patiently
the anger that has come from God upon you; Fear not, my children;
call out to God! He who brought this upon you will remember
you. As your hearts have been disposed to stray from God,
turn now ten times the more to seek him; for he who has brought
disaster upon you will, in saving you, bring you back enduring
joy." (Baruch 4:25a,27-29).
is angry at us? Yes, for all our infidelities. For our unconcern
for our fellow men, especially the least among us. For our
degradation of the environment. "The flood shall sweep
away his house with the waters that run off in the day of
God's anger." (Job 20:28). But God is merciful. Even
His chastisement is proof of His love and mercy, for it is
intended to turn us away from greater disaster and bring us
back to Him. So we bear our affliction patiently. God is forming
us, and it takes some time to do that. In the meantime, we
need not fear, because our lives and well-being are in His
hands, and we are His beloved children whom He loves. In the
meantime, we pray. We call out to God. We focus our minds
and our hearts and our whole being on Him. We examine our
lives. We repent of sin. We resolve to do better. We patiently
wait for His deliverance. "Be still before the Lord;
wait for God." (Psalm 37:7a).
is our savior. Jesus already saved us through the cross. The
Father continues to bring that salvation to us, through the
crosses that come into our lives. We rejoiced in our salvation
by the sacrificial suffering and death of our Lord Jesus.
We continue to rejoice even in our grief over our Ondoy disaster,
for our affliction brings us even closer to God. We look over
the havoc wreaked by the flood, but in the dark ugliness of
the muck and the mire, we see the radiance of God, who is
our salvation. "The Lord sits enthroned above the flood!
The Lord reigns as king forever!" (Psalm 29:10).
the Lord addressed Job out of the storm ...." (Job 38:1).
With every affliction there are lessons to be learned. I pray
that we will all have the time to listen.
bless and protect you all.
to me life is Christ, and death is gain." (Phil 1:21)
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of Job - Part 4[PDF]