By now, most of you have heard the news out of Japan: A major 7.9-8.9 magnitude earthquake just off their east coast. It was massive, sending a tsunami-level wave across the Pacific. It has already landed (3am EST) a 6-ft (if my facts are correct) wave on Hawaii, who also experienced “their own” 4.9 mag earthquake. Waves of only minor magnitude are expected to hit the U.S. west coast at approximately 11am (EST).
My request to you for prayer comes in three parts: Center of destruction, Edge of destruction, Outside the destruction. Each require a different sort of prayer once our prayers have moved through the very understandable and necessary stage of, “Oh, God, help.”
My heart is drawn, for whatever reason, most significantly to the Edge. These people are in the most traumatic space. They are close enough to see, feel and experience the devastation, but are alive and able to respond. Responding to tragedy is traumatic. To see what they see and experience what they are experiencing (even loss of life in their own circle of friends and family), and then having to muster the will and the energy to act, is unimaginable. Here, uniquely, do people need and rely on God’s strength to minister. To softly comfort the grieving while in some cases strongly engaging to literally save others. It’s like a war zone on the Edge – pray for them now!
Those outside the disaster area are in a very surreal space. It’s most likely that they are fleeing or being forced to evacuate…potentially leaving behind a situation or people that will produce emotions that will likely cover the gamut of anger to grief and then eventually deteriorate into guilt. Prayer here, for God’s wisdom above all else. They have decisions that are beyond comprehension.
Finally the Center. I honestly don’t know how to advise you to pray here. For many, its over. Eternity is where they are. If they had trusted Jesus…and they’re always too many who did not…they are with God. But it is an odd thing to think of the celebration(?) of arriving to heaven in contrast to the devastation and horror they just endured. After praying for miracles for those in the Center, our prayers for them shift back to those on the Edge and Outside – for Edge and Outside folks certainly have loved ones at the Center.
FYI. We’ve talked to Jen, in Cambodia, where the seems to have been literally no impact.
Pray. God’s people are in the midst of it all right now, helping some fight for their lives and helping others enter eternity…while experiencing the very same themselves…