Midland’s Mighty Army

Read: 1 Chronicles 12:1-18

Peace, peace to you, and peace to your helpers! (v. 18)

In Michigan, homeowners have basements that often serve as a recreational room, spare bedroom, or simply additional storage. When the dams burst, water completely filled this lower-level space or the main living level. Toxic mold from floodwaters can set in within days, rendering an already damaged home even more dangerous for the inhabitants. In the immediate aftermath of the Sanford Flood, saving these homes became a race against the clock.

In a crisis, boundaries evaporate. People of various faiths responded: Muslims, Mormons, Jews, and Christians informally mobilized and began showing up within hours of the “all clear” to return home. Ninety percent of the short-term recovery teams were simply people of one faith or another helping their neighbors of one faith or another in time of need. Volunteers spurred on by the driving conviction to do the right thing showed up in filthy, water-drenched homes to haul out contaminated, mud-soaked “stuff.”

In our passage today, 30 military men from all over Israel showed up to join David’s army, indicating growing support from every tribe. In 2020, men and women of Midland came out to fight a different battle. Not with swords and shields, but with shovels and buckets. In both cases, people volunteered to donate sweat, labor, and heart to help someone else and in both cases, God was glorified in the process. —Tammy DeRuyter

As you pray, ask God to help you see the needs in your community, then get into action!

About the Author

Tammy DeRuyter is a former stockbroker turned student of theology and history. She holds master’s degrees in both from Fuller Theological Seminary and Central Michigan University. Married for more than 25 years to Michael, an ordained RCA pastor, they have three emerging, young adult children ages 20, 21, and 22—the youngest of whom was adopted at 11.