I hope you are all safe and well. 

It’s been ten days since Iowa was devastated by the Derecho storm and there are still thousands of people trying to pull their lives back together. Many of us are familiar with the stats, have seen the tragic photos, and have listened to many people share their stories. 

There has been a lot of focus on getting power to those without it but of course, that is only the first step for what will be a long process to achieve some semblance of recovery. Many homes are crushed, businesses destroyed an

My brother lives in Cedar Rapids and I headed over to see him. The drive into town from Highway 30 left me in tears. Driving through the streets, the damage is unfathomable. While it may seem trivial compared to the human toll, I also wept for the trees and landscape that will forever be changed.  My brother is fine, but his car was totaled, and he only just had power restored to his apartment yesterday. He reminded me that he was lucky. That’s a classic Iowan point of view if you ask me.

While this year has made it difficult for some of us to give money, if you are in a position to help, I would beg you to give what you can. Countless groups are doing the Lord’s work in storm impacted areas, but here are two that jumped out at me:

The Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation

According to their website “Initially, the Disaster Recovery Fund will provide basic needs for those disproportionately affected by the derecho destruction. In the long term, the fund will adapt to evolving needs”

The United Way – East Central Iowa 

Not only can you give financial support here, but you can also stay abreast of the recovery efforts and find ways to get involved by volunteering your time. 

I have made a personal contribution to both of these organizations, and if you have the means, I hope you will as well. 

Best Wishes, 

Luke Martz