The media newsman was shocked – and he shocked the TV hosts and the audience.
Here are 5 things you should know about the tragic Tennessee tornados:
1. Every single person mentioned God.
CBS news correspondent David Begnaud spent several days looking at the destruction and death caused by the six tornados that created a horror story for thousands of people.
Begnaud has covered some of the biggest natural disasters – including Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. He said there was something unique about how Tennesseans reacted to the devastating storms.
“There was a resilience that seemed to bond them together which was inspiring to me… Every single person I talked to mentioned God.”
2. The tornados killed, destroyed homes, businesses, and churches.
The tornado killed at least 24 people. 140 buildings were destroyed. The storm turned Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church, a predominantly black congregation first establishment in 1863, into rubble.
Pastor Jacques Boyd shared on video via Facebook, “We see houses with no windows. We see houses with no roofs. We see houses without livable conditions. But God, we know that You are able to turn it around. So we ask now, God, that You do what only You can do.”
“And God, we promise You that in spite of this tragedy, in spite of this crisis, we’re still going to give You the glory. We’re still going to give You the praise. We’re still going to open up our mouths with thanksgiving. We’re still going to preach the word of God.”
The Church at Lockeland Springs held an outdoor community prayer and worship service where the community was encouraged to rise up and rebuild Nashville.
“We have a long road ahead, but God is still in control and He is still on the throne. Our strength comes from Him, and we will rebuild as a family. We are going to be okay, Nashville. Stay strong, keep praying, and continue loving your neighbor.”
First Baptist Church Mt. Juliet gathered at Mt. Juliet High School and made the service available online. Pastor Philip Dunn said the church will rebuild and get through these difficult times.
“Let’s all come together. There’s a lot of emotion from this week, a lot of thoughts. We’ve got a lot of questions. Most importantly we know there is safety in being together and looking to Jesus. One day at a time, just trusting Him with our next steps.”
3. What about my Nashville team?
My wife and I have been in prayer and tears over the destruction.
Our staff is ok. Some suffered damage to their cars and homes.
Places Shelly and I eat at… the awesome cookie manufacturer I bought Shelly cookies from – gone. It’s like a war zone around our office.
4. Churches, ministries, and individual Christians were the first to help the victims.
Samaritan’s Purse immediately sent out more than 450 volunteers to help with cleanup.
Finally, the government did what they could. But it was the Christians that reached out to the hurting and broken … helping rescue people after the tornado … helping search for people … helping to pick up the pieces…
Christians prayed. They cried. They testified of the love of Christ. The Christian music community was mobilized.
For King and Country wrote on Instagram, “Many of us were all through the night listening to sirens, searching for information on what was taking place around us, and checking in with loved ones around Nashville. By God’s grace, we’re all unharmed, but the same cannot be said for our city-which has taken quite a hit. Be praying for our community as it’s been shocking to see all the devastation this morning.”
Natalie Grant shared a Bible verse of comfort for his city, quoting Psalm 34:18, “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit.”
5. Tennessee – the Volunteer State – demonstrated the spirit of helping one another in need.
Less than a week after the tornados, more than 26,000 people had signed up to help with cleanup through Hands on Nashville. The website to volunteer and donate kept crashing due to the high volume of internet traffic.
Police said their volunteer portal had to be closed just one day after the tornados hit due to the high volume of over 3000 registrants.
Tennessee Titans football players showed up in north Nashville to help clean up debris after their coach, Mike Vrabel challenged them to “put the phones down, pick the branches up.”
The Salvation Army said in an email, “As roads reopened and volunteers poured into the hardest-hit areas of our communities across Putnam, Wilson, and Davidson Counties, we remain amazed at the love and hope extended into those recovering from the storms.”
If you have a Twitter account, watch this short video from FoxNashville news (1 ½ minutes) that represents the spirit of kindness and helpfulness demonstrated all across the tornado-ravaged communities. Click here to view video.
Watch this 2-minute video message from the pastor of The Church at Lockeland Springs. NOTE: There is no audio for the first few seconds and the last few seconds of the video. Click here to view video.
What do you think? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are the rest of this week’s articles: