Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus Christ.
We all watch in shock and disbelief as we see the destruction and chaos caused by record rainfall in the wake of Hurricane Matthew. The same water that graces our geography has inundated us.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Floyd in 1999, a homeowner declared, “The water in my house was 5 feet deep. Thanks be to God I am 5 feet 2.”
Indeed, the water has risen. However, trusting in God who is generous and strong, we are not overcome.
Together we are resourceful and creative, trusting the Holy Spirit to speak to us and to use us in restoring families and communities. Messages of comfort, prayer and support are pouring in to my inbox. Hearts eager to help are turning toward us, and we give thanks.
Mike and I are in Vietnam for the annual meetings of the United Methodist Vietnam Initiative. Seeing the news reports and hearing directly by email from you all, we pray for our beloved North Carolina as we reconfigure plans and return soon to be with you all.
May God be with us as we lament and as we work together to relieve suffering, strengthen hope, and restore homes and other essential structures in our communities.
With gratitude to God for our life together in Christ,
Hope Morgan Ward