The Big F Word
You probably clicked on this link out of curiosity. I’m glad you did. I’ll be the first to say that yes, I’ve wanted to scream the “f” word out of frustration or anger, hurt or fear, but really, that’s not what I’m about to do.
Instead, I’m about to invite you in. To a story. I could tell you there are three hundred and fifty seven stories, but really, there are thousands. Thousands who would all say their life changed because of the same F word. The F word that changed all of our lives on July 17th.
A lot of us probably use that word metaphorically, to refer to something of passion. Something with power, something emotional. I used to. But no. I’m here to just straight up talk about literal flames that famished the mountains and feasted on homes, down to their very foundation.
I thought I could get through this without tears, but really, it just comes. They come like a fiery waterfall, pouring down my cheeks, just like the very same ones that burned down the mountain. I could tell you experience after experience, but I’m inviting you in to maybe seek those out yourself. Three hundred and fifty seven homes with so many stories inside each of those used-to-stand walls.
In one hundred and forty three days, I’ve learned what love really means. It means sacrifice. It means coming together and serving, even if you haven’t showered in two weeks. It means unloading hundreds of cases of water, installing generators, passing garbage bag after garbage bag full of clothes from person to person. It means sitting in a dark room without any lights for hours on end with kids who were just displaced from their “normal” routine. It means washing dishes with a garden hose just to have a plate to eat off of. It means staying up all night to watch portions of the mountain fizzle in embers so the rest of the family can rest. It means sifting through the remains of your neighbor’s home, just in hopes of finding something of value.
It means being selfless. It means thinking about others before your own needs. I have not exercised this to the best of my ability, but I’ve watched hundreds do this without a blink. I’ve watched this in my very family. Love means being obedient, even if you can barely keep your eyes open. It means looking for every possible opportunity to shower adoration and care over people, even if you don’t feel like it.
It means exercising Romans 12:9. I spent a solid thirty minutes looking up almost every translation of this verse and I just want to share a few.
>> Love must be sincere.
>> Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them.
>> Let love be genuine.
>> Let love be without hypocrisy.
Really, one of the most powerful ways of loving somebody is by calling them family. By opening up your heart, your home, and your time to invite someone in and listen to them and invest in them…that’s love in action, and that’s what we are called to do.
Because there are so many people displaced from their homes, many living in trailers that aren’t suitable for winter, or barely insulated tents, dilapidated rentals, etc., we are striving to love in action and are asking you to join us.
During this Christmas season and beyond, we want our community to be found – not forgotten. We want to begin to cultivate new foundations for these families, love them fiercely and begin to give them hope for the future.
We’re asking you to consider adopting a family. By doing so, we’re asking you to commit to helping these families through investing in them. We’ve had families who lost their homes fill out forms expressing their greatest needs and we’re asking you adopt one of these forms >> maybe it’ll be through personal items like gifting a new Kitchen Aid for her, items for the kids, or a new car for those whose burned. For families who have yet to fill out forms, we are collecting generic gift cards to places like Costco, Fred Meyer, and prepaid Visa cards that we will personally deliver to these families in order to bless them this Christmas season.
Many hands make light work, and love is most powerful and effective when shared. Love is not just a feeling, it’s an action. We are inviting and asking you to join us by adopting people in our community by calling them family.
For more information on how you can help, please refer to our website: