Coventry, Morgan City, and Being Christian

As many of you have read by now, the Mississippi has a record amount of water flowing down it right now after the extra heavy snowfalls across Midwest the past winter have long ago melted.  This has caused many a community located along the Mississippi to flood.  And this would be a disaster of epic proportions for New Orleans if it weren’t for the spillways upriver from the city.  The Bonnet Carre Spillway has already been fully opened, which will our thousands upon thousands of gallons of freshwater in the brackish Lake Ponchartrain.  This alone is projected to make the Mississippi crest at 19.5 feet (the river levees are 20 ft).  But if their estimates are off, they are holding out the option of opening up the Morganza spillway, further upriver, but with the consequence of flooding far more than into a lake.

In World War II, the British broke the Germans Enigma Code.  It ended up provided incredible intelligence into what the Nazis were planning.  But one of the first communications they intercepted was a planned bombing of Coventry.  Should they warn the local residents?  They made the heart wrenching decision not to do so and the resulting bombing raid resulted in many deaths.  But, over the course of the war, many lives were saved knowing the Enigma code.  Nevertheless, it is one thing to agree it was the right decision in hindsight.  It is quite another to make the decision not knowing how long the Germans would use the code.  What if the Germans changed had changed the code the next week?  Would it have been worth it to lose all the lives in Coventry?  And even if we knew it would work out, it might been even harder if it had been our personal loved ones who had been lost.

One of the variables at play this week is that if they open the Morganza Spillway, Morgan City will see massive flooding.  Now, Morgan City has just 12,700 people compared with the 344,000 that live in New Orleans.  But it doesn’t make it any less a potential disaster for the people of Morgan City.

In the end, I believe Churchill made the right call.  And if we must, opening Morganza will be the right call.  But, I also know this – Jesus did not base his ministry on population density.  And he cared for and focused much time on those who were suffering.

Whatever political decision must be made, it is my hope that God’s people will stand up and respond to those who end up with homes full of water here, just as they have for so long after Katrina (Parkway continues to host mission groups helping us rebuild after Katrina).

There is much in life we cannot control.  We are sometimes faced trying to make the best of bad decisions.  But God’s people should forever be drawn to those who face difficult circumstances.

Until next time,

Tom

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