Is. 55:1 “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.
Is. 55:2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.
In the feeding and relief distribution, I saw people lining up for relief goods for hours. Some of them line up from morning in order to get the much-needed packs by evening. In the news, some people are fighting just to have some canned sardines and instant noodles. We went to several evacuation centers to do medical missions, relief distribution and feeding program and saw people who are distressed; many of them grieving because they lost everything that they have. But when they get the bags or the food they have waited for, you will see their faces light up. But it dawned on me that these things that we are giving them would only satisfy their stomachs for a few hours and then they will go hungry again.
Relief, as the word connotes, is really just a temporary remedy to their huge problems. Many of them had the problem of poverty and hunger even before the typhoon hit.
Different government agencies, companies, private individuals and media organizations are also doing relief work. Some have moved on from relief to rehabilitation and rebuilding. They offer things that will only fix the problem temporarily. But as a church, we have something to offer that will last. We need to give them a better solution. Besides giving them a pack of food and mineral water, we can also introduce them to the Bread of Life and the Living Water. People need the Lord. He is inviting us to come to Him because He is the only One who can truly satisfy. I believe that during times of disasters, people hearts are more open to receiving comfort from the Prince of Peace.
Is. 55:6 Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near.
In photo: Children of the evacuees in Alabang Elementary School praying as Carlo Santos (Head of Kids Ministry) leads them while the parents are queing up for the relief/ food distribution.