As I write to you all, I sit in a hotel in Nairobi, Kenya. We returned a couple of hours ago from an amazing launch service for City Church Nairobi, a partner of MULTIPLi Global. I feel immensely blessed because I was able to travel for this special event, I traveled with my husband (!!) of four months who is napping in the next room, we have amazing opportunities this week to minister and see ministries in Kenya, and we have food, bottled water to drink, water to bathe, and water to flush the toilets.

Why do I feel blessed to be able to flush the toilet? Because most of the people in the city that I call home haven’t bathed or flushed their toilets in 4 or more days. Even worse, there’s no more bottled water for purchase in the city, or if there is, it’s triple the normal price or more. It has been a terribly hot summer there and temperatures aren’t letting up. Then today there was a small earthquake (4.1), as if they weren’t already dealing with enough. As I try to focus on the ministry that we came to do in Kenya, I find that my loyalties are divided. It’s tough to tear myself away from the news articles and Facebook posts about the current situation in Lima and other parts of Peru.

Perhaps you aren’t up to date on what’s going on in Peru. It’s not too surprising – I had a difficult time finding an article online in English that explained the situation clearly. Somehow after the news agencies virally showed a woman miraculously emerging from one of the mudslides, the overall story slid right out of the headlines. Here’s a short version: Abnormal rains are causing mudslides and flooding in various parts of Peru, mostly in the north and along the coast. The amount of mud and debris in the rivers then causes water treatment plants downstream to close their intake valves. They simply can’t filter out that amount of junk from the water. Water distribution is then cut to cities like Lima, people go to the store to buy water, supply and demand raises the prices and panic levels, and suddenly there’s no water to be purchased in the capital city of 10 million people. Major roadways have been washed away making food and water distribution to affected areas very difficult, not to mention just transporting people out of those areas and transporting in the physical labor to help. Bridges are out across the country, agriculture is swamped, food prices are rising, and the ones suffering the most in all of this are those who were living in poverty before the first drop of rain fell. (Read more here: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-peru-floods-idUSKBN16O2V5)

As I sat on a conference call late last night that was aimed at disaster relief efforts, it was difficult not to feel overwhelmed by the immensity of the situation in Peru. My mind recalled images of disaster relief trips to Mississippi after Katrina. I flipped between the thoughts, “I’m thankful that I am not there to have to deal with the water crisis in our own home,” to “I feel helpless being so far from my home country right now,” to “What will we do when we return to Lima next week if there’s still no food and water?” and even, “Will there be enough water for the cat sitter to give to Toby?” What irony that I am currently double-fisting a lovely Kenyan tea and bottled water in a country that is suffering a terrible drought, while excess rains fall in Peru where many don’t have clean water to drink.

I was thankful for this reminder from my boss:

Psalm 29:10-11 (NIV)
10 
The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;

    the Lord is enthroned as King forever.
11 The Lord gives strength to his people;
    the Lord blesses his people with peace.

I desire to rest in the peace of knowing that the Lord sits enthroned over the flood. It is in that peace and strength that I want to pray for Peru while also focusing on my tasks here in Kenya. My loyalties need not be divided in this time, for my loyalty is to the Lord who is enthroned as King forever.

Please pray with me for Peru and Kenya.

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