President Bush offers to help Lebanon’s army prior to his trip to the Middle East later this week:
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Civil War in Lebanon over 53 100 dead
Cyclone in Myanmar 34,000 100,000 dead
Earthquake in China 9000  50,000 dead

And God is a merciful God? A loving God? Yes.

“Every deadly calamity is a merciful call from God for the living to repent. That was Jesus’ stunning statement to those who brought him news of calamity. The tower of Siloam had fallen, and 18 people were crushed. What about this, Jesus? they asked. He answered, “Do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:4-5).

The point of every deadly calamity is this: Repent. Let our hearts be broken that God means so little to us. Grieve that he is a whipping boy to be blamed for pain, but not praised for pleasure. Lament that he makes headlines only when man mocks his power, but no headlines for ten thousand days of wrath withheld. Let us rend our hearts that we love life more than we love Jesus Christ. Let us cast ourselves on the mercy of our Maker. He offers it through the death and resurrection of his Son.

This is the point of all pleasure and all pain. Pleasure says: “God is like this, only better; don’t make an idol out of me. I only point to him.” Pain says: “What sin deserves is like this, only worse; don’t take offense at me. I am a merciful warning.”

-John Piper

3As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”

4Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Christ,[a]’ and will deceive many. 6You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8All these are the beginning of birth pains.

9″Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 10At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. 14And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

Mathew 24:8-14

This is Isaac Munthali and she is my sponsor child through World Vision. She is 11 and lives in Malawi.

Of course her name jumped out at me as I was looking for a girl! Issac is the name of Abraham’s beloved son. His name means “He laughs!” in Hebrew. (Sara laughed when God told her she would have a child at 90 years old!)

God later changed Isaac’s name to Israel and the rest is history…
This Isaac and her family live in a community severely affected by the HIV/AIDS crisis. In some communities, AIDS affects the entire social structure as a generation of hardworking adults is being wiped out. Frightened children and exhausted grandparents rarely have money for food, school, or medical care. Isaac is in primary school and she enjoys music. She helps at home with the gardening. She likes to play soccer and is good health.  

My sponsorship commitment will help provide Isaac and her community with the assistance they need to save a generation from the HIV/AIDS crisis. World Vision faithfully uses my sponsorship support of Isaac to meet her needs and minimize the impact of AIDS in her community through tangible prevention and care programs. World Vision children and families gain access to basic needs while learning about God’s unconditional love.

You can help someone like Isaac too by clicking here.