This week our neighbor suffered a devastating loss. He owns a small hobby farm with a few acres and several animals. On Tuesday evening his main storage barn burned to the ground. We were eating dinner at the kitchen table when one of the girls noticed the neighbors were having "some sort of crazy bonfire". Jory and I were devastated when we realized it was not a happy little bonfire but a massive 4 alarm barn fire with flames shooting 30 feet in the air. Needless to say, it was a terrifying ordeal, even from the safety of our kitchen.
I can't help but think of the conversation I had with some friends just 24 hours earlier about how God uses life altering events to turn us into the people He wants us to be, and how we should commit to praying for our neighbors. So is it a coincidence that a life altering event happened 24 hours after I committed to praying for this specific neighbor? Not likely.
We felt that it was best if we didn't go over to check on our neighbor right away. We didn't want to be gawkers who were attempting to hide our curiosity behind our concerns. We waited a full 24 hours before we went over. Long enough for reality to set in, and the grief that came with it. There was pain in his eyes as he talked about what he'd lost - 4 goats, 500-600 bails of hay and 3 maintenance vehicles, not to mention a barn larger than my house. We offered what we could, but he was still too devastated to take us up on any of our attempts to help. So for now we pray, and cling to the fact that God is good, even when His plan sucks.