Much of Bastrop, Texas is in ashes since the massive fire (two fires, really) burned over 1,554 homes and 34,068 acres. To help you visualize, 34,068 acres is about 53 square miles. As of today, the Texas Forest Service says it is 98% contained.
One of my cousins by marriage shared a link on Facebook to a KVUE report, “Ash sifting brings amazing find for Bastrop homeowner“, about the recovery effort in Bastrop that is being manned by volunteers in the Austin Disaster Relief Network, a church-based, Christian volunteer organization.
I loved this story because one woman’s efforts will forever impact the life, and the level of hope, for someone who lost everything in the fire. She served him in the name of Christ, helping him to sift through the ashes of what was left, and giving him a true gift of love.
This story reminded me of the verses in Isaiah 61:1-4 that describe the mission of the Messiah, and thus, describe our mission:
“1The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
2To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;
3To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.
4And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations.”
Please join me in prayer for the thousands who not only have lost everything, but are still lost themselves. God help us to be the hands and feet of Christ to our neighbors who are crying out for help.