For we know that if the earthly tent which is our house is torn down, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. (2 Corinthians 5:1 NAS)
On December 25, 2009, the AFP news reported that more than 47,000 people in the Philippines fled their homes to seek refuge in temporary shelters a safe distance from the scalding ash and rocks of Mount Mayon as the volcano continued to spew ash and molten lava. Experts warned that the volcano could explode with major eruption any time, and thousands of evacuees had no choice but to spend their Christmas Day in the crowded camps. Those who lived in the camps were surviving on basic government rations with some of the men raising whatever they could from their farms to supplement food handouts. Some 96 ash explosions reaching heights of up to two kilometers were booming sounds and 871 volcanic quakes had been recorded the preceding 24 hours of that Christmas Day. The 2,460-metre volcano, famed for its near-perfect cone, had erupted 48 times in recorded history. In 1814, more than 1,200 people were killed as lava buried the town of Cagsawa.
Some of us may have experienced life in the aftermath of natural disasters. Others may have experienced difficult situations which although may not be as drastic as the natural disasters, nonetheless have faced despair and the sense of helplessness. In situations such as these, we often wonder why God permits such crises to happen in our lives. We sometimes even question God's purpose for placing us in such desperate situations. We despair because we cannot see any hope ahead of us as all that we possessed are gone.
In situations such as these, our hope and reliance should only be in God, for when our earthly tents, our house and our possessions, are torn down, we know we have each a house from God, one that is not made with hands, but is eternal in the heavens (2 Corinthians 5:1). "For indeed in this house we groan, longing to be clothed with our dwelling from heaven, inasmuch as we, having put it on, will not be found naked," and "while we are in this tent, we groan, being burdened, because we do not want to be unclothed but to be clothed, so that what is mortal will be swallowed up by life. Now He who prepared us for this very purpose is God, who gave to us the Spirit as a pledge. Therefore, being always of good courage, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord—for we walk by faith, not by sight—" (2 Corinthians 5:2-7 NAS).
Our future, no matter how smooth or difficult, should therefore be walked according to faith and not sight. If we are in need, we should pray and not lose heart, and ask of God for His providence. If we have plenty, we should not hesitate to give to the ones in need (1 Timothy 6:17-19). As believers of the Lord, therefore, let us be willing to share and give of our property and possessions to help the needy (Acts 2:44-45; Deuteronomy 15:7-11).
Dear Lord, You know our situations and You know our desperate need for You and Your providence. Help us and our families Lord to pull through the difficult situations we are facing now. Still our hearts and minds Lord that we may never doubt Your purpose in our lives, but be always assured of Your care and providence. Stir our hearts Lord that we who have sufficient or plenty, may willingly and generously give to help the needy.