Katrina’s side effects missed Charlotte. Even the rain forecast for last night was very light. This morning as I sat on the porch the sun was shining, the sky clear, a cool wind blowing away the heaviness of summer. The only water here is from our sprinkler system.

Yet only a few hundred miles away Katrina has left death and devastation engulfing New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.

The Psalm for this week (148) asks the whole creation to praise God, including “all deeps … and stormy wind fulfilling his command.” I do join in that praise. Yet Katrina is a terrible reminder that we cannot be sentimental about nature.

Someone has written of the whole creation dancing with joy, and it is certainly true that the angels danced at the wonder of creation. But consider these words of Philip Toynbee:

“Such rhapsodies are meaningless to me … For it is not true that the whole creation dances in eternal joy … We do not want to see only the natural world that is prettified, shorn of pain and disfigurement, in which there is no room for blood or bone. If we fail to take the pain of creation seriously we also fail to take the reality of God seriously.”

Lord, bless the homeless, the shattered, the bereaved, the hungry and frightened, the old people and the children. May those who have lost nearly all know that You have not lost them. May those who seek to find and help them find strength. Through Christ our homeless Lord who leads us Home. Amen.

Leighton Ford,

August 31, 2005

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