August 10, 2020

Silence, Tears, Prayers, Practical Support

The title expresses the only four responses appropriate in the light of Monday’s storms that devastated Moore, Oklahoma.

O God our refuge and strength our present help in time of trouble, surround all who are affected by the devastating tornado in Moore, Oklahoma with your care; through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen. (ELCA prayer)

Here is the American Red Cross Statement on Oklahoma Tornado. Follow the link to find out how to donate.



tornado survivors

tornado responders


  1. Christiane says

    when there are no words . . .

    may He come along side with strength

  2. Oh dear Jesus draw close to those parents. Draw in others to hold them close and support them.

  3. Rick Ro. says

    The images of devastation are jaw-dropping. Not sure how to pray, so praying that Jesus intercedes as only he can.

  4. Thanks–As of yet, I have not seen any ridiculous statements from “the usual suspects” who feel compelled to offer “explanations” when such tragedies occur. Your response seems so appropriate.

  5. There are no words.

    I expect to hear a request from Churches of Christ Disaster Relief soon (I am a Church of Christ member and our church supports them.) Wow. I am looking at TV coverage right now and there is just rubble everywhere.

  6. David Cornwell says

    In my imagination I cannot even come close to understanding the depth of devastation and suffering that families, indivduals, and communities are going through right now. This was a day when everything in their lives changed forever.

  7. # 3. Ridiculous statements: Piper tweeted Job1:19 (He has deleted the tweet)

    John Piper’s Tweet During Devastating Twister Aftermath
    Check out Spiritual Sounding Board to see the tweet.

    • Lets see if this link works. I find it terribly sad that John Piper would tweet this in light of all the suffering & loss, my prayers are with the people…

    • Christiane says

      All I know about someone’s insensitive tweet is that by this time, the good people of Oklahoma who have read it know by now for sure that there are more horses’ asses in this world than horses.

  8. Marcus Johnson says

    Piper posted a particularly poor proclamation prior to purging it. He said he was sorry, but his statement still sounds somewhat less sage than stony, and the subsequent scrutiny suggested a significant supply of sensitivity in service to the survivors of the cyclone.

    My apologies for the alliteration, but in the aftermath, I ask, “Is it possible to pray and prepare to proffer provisions to these people, and possibly project patience and piety, rather than a pretentious proliferation of pride?” (And yes, if you respond, I will try to answer in alliteration).

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      At the very least, Piper said something dumb.

      In a country of 300 million (including CELEBRITY preacher-men), there’s going to be somebody, somewhere, who reacts by saying something dumb.

  9. Don’t forget the Salvation Army: Text STORM to 80888. (They do the same work as the American Red Cross, but far less of your donation money goes to overhead costs.)

  10. Marcus Johnson,

    Piper apologized, he said he was sorry? Can you point me to that. Not that I doubt you, I would like to read his apology. Thanks!

    • Marcus Johnson says

      Oops! I assumed he said he was sorry, but there is no sign of such statement. I stand in shame, but his stupidity and scarce sensitivity stands significantly.

      • Marcus Johnson- No need to stand in shame IMHO. Thank-You for clarifying.
        Love this: “his stupidity and scarce sensitivity stands significantly.”
        He has a record of saying the most ridiculous statements when tragedy strikes.

        • Christiane says

          is he doing it for attention, to increase his notoriety ?

          • Christiane,

            Whew- it might be for notoriety- or to be relevant- or just to shove his doctrine down the throats of us infidels, or perhaps he likes to be God’s spokesman…

            I will never know, but it breaks my heart. His first tweet only makes our calling more difficult to love & extend Christs Mercy to the lost & the least.

            His God is pissed, my God isn’t. Ugh. Wish he wouldn’t have ever said a word- or tweet…

  11. Headless Unicorn Guy says

    This morning in the break room at work, one of my bosses (originally from OK) was telling how he had friends in the tornado-hit area and managed to get in contact with them. They got missed by the funnel and were outside the destruction area, but lost electricity and landline phones; they’re now on a generator and cellphones.

    This led to a back-and-forth about how Tornado Alley residents can’t understand why anyone lives in California because of the earthquakes. Maybe it’s because you can’t outrun or dodge an earthquake, but out here a quake really has to work at it to get anywhere near the level of devastation you get in a tornado’s path.

    Has anyone gotten a severity rating on the tornado itself? From the damage, it looks like it could be an F4 or F5. (I am reminded of the scene from the movie Twister where the F4 hits in the middle of the night, illuminated by its own lightning.)

    • I grew up on the edge of tornado alley. And spent a few nights in basements of older stone buildings waiting out some storms. And spend the day off from college back in spring 74 during the big outbreak when they closed nearly everything. And almost bought a home a month or two before a big one plowed through it’s back yard back in 89.

      And yet I’ve never seen a tornado. It’s a spot problem. Most people who live in tornado areas never see one. Big thunderstorms but tonados, rarely. So for all the hype and destruction they cause, it is a very localized and concentrated problem. And usually with some warning. And many times you can see or hear one before it gets to you. Yesterday the Red Cross Tornado app on my iPhone sounding an alarm for the first time. (I track areas in Texas where I have family.)

      Earthquakes on the other had have little or no warning, occur across wide areas, and there’s not much you can do but bend over and …. hoping it’s not needed.

      The difference in my mind and I suspect most people even if they don’t realize it is that with a tornado you feel you have some control over your fate, with an earthquake the only thing you can do is ride it out.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      Got a severity rating this morning.

      With a footprint a mile (klick-and-a-half) wide.
      Minimum energy release of 90kt.

  12. Robert F says

    Nature in all its destructive fury is not any kind of good mother. May God be with those who suffer.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      From all the gushing over “Mother Gaia Wuvs Us” and “The PLAAAAAAANET Will Thank Us”, we have forgotten what the old gods of nature were like. Giving you crops and fertility (and dynamite sex) one minute, killing all of you with an F5 tornado or volcanic eruption or drought and famine the next. Like an unpredictable alcoholic parent. (No wonder you “passed your children through the fire” to the Baals; gotta buy ’em off somehow and get on their good side.)

      Even our neo-Pagans are just that — NEO-Pagans, influenced by twenty centuries of Christian thought in their modern reconstructions of Western Paganism.

    • Christiane says

      those carbon fuel profiteers who affect climate change increasing the fury of storms . . . neither are any of them ‘good mothers’ either 🙂

      • Robert F says

        Most of us are carbon fuel profiteers, to one degree or another; none of us are “good mothers,” in that respect, not if we live from the wealth created by a heavy carbon-footprint producing economy. Perhaps our lifestyles do contribute to the ferocity of such storms, and we all will need to make some changes in the time ahead (which won’t go over too well because it will involve that dirty word “sacrifice”), but our morally indifferent Mother Nature has been spinning out natural disasters for as long as humankind can remember, and long before human produced pollutants were even a blip on the screen. I suppose that some eco-extremists might even think of humanity as Mother Nature’s most dangerous natural disaster on Earth; if true, then we would be very much like our Mom.

  13. Rick Ro. says

    Hearing some of the eyewitness and survivor accounts makes me recall the Drive-By Truckers song, “Tornadoes.” Tough, eerie, gritty song.