Ministry Today – Serving and empowering church leaders

WEB-Reuters-Oklahoma-Photog-Rick-WilkingYet another tragedy. There are no words to describe the scenes we are seeing from the recent tornadoes in Oklahoma. No words.

So don’t say anything. Just pray.

Please, don’t try to provide answers when people ask why. Don’t pretend you know why. Don’t find some “righteous” sounding reason for the devastation. It’s not helpful.

So don’t say anything. Just pray.

Years ago, when I served as vice mayor of my community, we were hit with a devastating tornado that destroyed much of our downtown. I learned that what we needed most was prayer and resources.

How do you pray?

  • Pray for emergency workers and relief efforts.
  • Pray for survivors as they recover.
  • Pray for those without homes.
  • Pray for those who have lost loved ones.
  • Pray for community, state and national leaders who will need to respond.
  • Pray for donations and resources needed to survive and eventually rebuild.
  • Pray for the vision that will develop as a result of this tragedy.
  • Pray for the children who will be afraid at school every time it storms for a while.
  • Pray for opportunities to share hope with people in the midst of tragedy.
  • Pray for the churches and pastors in the areas impacted who will be called upon for hope and help.
  • Pray for a spirit of cooperation among people who have lost so much.

How Do You Respond?

Unless you are trained in disaster relief, there’s probably no reason to go now. You won’t be much help. Stay tuned for the calls for help when they come—and there will be many in the days, weeks and months to come. Today you can give. Money—that’s what they need.

Here are a few places you can give now:

Red Cross

Southern Baptist Disaster Relief

Salvation Army

Those are usually three of the largest groups who offer support in disasters. There are obviously many others, but make sure you are giving to a reputable group.

Some friends in ministry I trust greatly have started a relief fund for Oklahoma. They are doing it in an easy-to-track way. Check it out here.

Pray and give. It’s the best way to respond to a natural disaster.

Ron Edmondson is a pastor at Immanuel Baptist Church in Lexington, Ky. He is also a church leadership consultant who is passionate about planting churches, helping established churches thrive and assisting pastors and those in ministry think through leadership, strategy and life. Prior to ministry, Ron had more than 20 years of business experience, mostly as a self-employed business owner. Follow Ron on Facebook, Twitter, and his blog at

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