What is it Good For??

"War does not determine who is right, only who is left." -- Bertrand Russell

Cleverer words were never spoken...

At a time when we are being constantly berated by the beautiful, yet sometimes very angry Mother Nature we'd love to be able to at least count on humanity. And we have, but not ALL of it!!

People have been hunkering down in the foxholes they call their homes, defending against Mother Nature's attack. Now they have an even more dangerous, man-made threat to distress over.

In a world that seems to be run by unbalanced and egotistical maniacs, we need words like Bertrand's to make us laugh and think.

Laughter and thought, what a combo!!

So let's help each other think and laugh. Let's make sure to help someone experience beauty in a time where it might be difficult to find and hope that we are all left to talk about it!

Recovering

For the many whose lives have been touched, even terribly damaged by the hurricanes in Houston and Florida, recovery is hard. Sometimes it feels impossible.

Roses in the Alley wants to play a small part in giving you and them hope. If you know someone who is hurting from the aftermath of the storms, please come to our bandcamp site and download this free song recorded by one of our founders 15 years ago . Just place "0" in the price.

If it brings you peace, please forward the link to your friends who may need hope as well.

Any donations that you might make on the site by entering any number but 0 over the next few days will be 100% donated to the recovery effort, and RitA will add to the fund as well. 

Here are the lyrics below:

Lord, Send Out Your Spirit

You gather the rain
In far reaches of the heavens
You take wild rivers to tame
As they wander through the mountains

All the world and its seed
Taste the waters You created
And in Your Spirit they breathe
They bring forth Your celebration

Refrain:    Lord, send out Your Spirit and renew the  face of the earth         
Lord, send out Your Spirit and renew the face of the earth

On the wings of the wind
In the glancing tongues of fire
Each fearful heart You enflame
With your burning, unceasing desire

Send down, send down Your Spirit on us
Send down, send down Your Spirit on us

You call each one by their name
Your sons and Your daughters
We hear Your call to proclaim
Your mercy  and Your power

Rain down, rain down Your Spirit on us… and renew the face of the earth
© 2002, Robert G. Metivier

May this be a more graced set of images than the ones that we experienced in the storms. Please listen in and pass it along. Hopefully we at RitA can make just a little difference.

Photo by Brandon Kawamura on Unsplash

The Aftermath

The Aftermath of the Storm

There are three parts to a storm, the Preparation, the Storm itself, and the Aftermath.

The Preparation is filled with planning, anxiety, tying down, placing high, closing off. "Hunkering down" is the phrase everyone uses. Or evacuation, which feels like a combination of seeking safety and deserting all you know.

And then the judgment of so many people who are not here as to your every decision and movement. And the welcome thoughts, caring and prayer of others.

The Storm comes.  It is filled with watching and listening to the wind and the rain, doing everything you can to see to the survival and protection of family and neighbors. And then the darkness.

The Aftermath is the most challenging to me. The rising of the river that then floods homes to the windows in the lower lying areas near you, the darkness and heat and humidity, the waiting for power that is only "4 hours away" that becomes 4 days and more. Swimming teams rescue the flooded-out, power workers come from everywhere at great risk and yet there are not enough, and everyone begins the slow clean-up of the destruction. The evacuees return home hoping to see the porch light on and their friends and neighbors safe.

And that power returns and an elementary school burns. The flooded victims are pulled one by one from the water, gathered in shelters and fed and warmed. You hope that they found everyone but don't really know.

The community fights through and survives. 

Then the realization that your recovery has begun, but for others it still continues and may not have a clear end in sight.

In a week the World will forget, and the pundits will challenge the "false news event." Famous musicians will scream at you about "global warming" as they do their "charity concerts."

But you know. You live in the Aftermath.

We’ll Sing with the Birds After the Storm!

"Birds sing after a storm; why shouldn't people feel as free to delight in whatever sunlight remains to them." -- Rose Kennedy

This is a lovely idea in theory.  Unfortunately Harvey and the ominous thought of Irma have taken away most people's reason to delight in the remaining sunlight.

But as Houston has shown us, people are strong, this country is strong!!

I hope everything comes out smelling likes roses when it's all said and done. Or maybe she'll weaken or take a turn. Either way I hope to hear the birds singing to the heavens.

One guarantee is that my very musical family in Florida will be singing louder than any of the birds once this all finally passes!

For now we can just pray and prepare, and hope to once again delight in the sunshine!!

Is God in the Hurricane?

How many times have I heard: "Where is God in this tragedy?" When in the aftermath of one hurricane and another seems to be bearing down on you, it becomes an urgent question. 

After all, we see God in the beauty of Nature and many of us remark about that with others.  But what about the ugly and tragic natural events?  Do we see God in the Hurricane?

For me there are far too many simplistic answers to this question that fall apart when you look very closely at them. Every respectable and unrespectable doomsdayer will have his or her say for sure.  The "good pray-ers" after all should be spared and the "infidels" chastized  🙁

The trouble is that nowhere in the Gospels would you find this notion. You have to reach back to the tribal God of the early Hebrews to find this idea.

The only workable answer that I can muster is to just  be thankful for the days that we have, and pull together to help each other in the horrific days that we must endure because of the Nature of this planet.  

And then, yes, I think that we can say that God is there in the Hurricane in the nature of our care and sharing. Compassion is where He is best found.

 

Happy Labor Day

Pepere (Pepper) 2

We hope you had a Happy and Fun Labor Day!

A day of rest and relaxation with your family and friends, children and grandchildren.

Just remember that they are still learning from your every move and  every mannerism you can imagine ! Make sure that you model the right things. 

This one just might fall under Epic Fail! Ha.

Hope you did better than me, and had a great day! You earned it. Spend it well!