Drought isn’t something people usually think of when it comes to “disasters”. We can instantly see the damage done by a cyclone or a bushfire, but drought is often a long term series of disasters that progressively impact whole communities.
I grew up in tropical North Queensland with “flooding rains” but learned a lot about the experience of drought from my wife Heidi, who is a wheat and sheep farmer’s daughter from rural New South Wales. Our rural communities that are enduring drought have a great resilience, but they need support and they need people in the rest of the country to be made aware of their suffering.
There is a board game called “Squatter” which is played like Monopoly but “Squatter” set in the context of sheep stations in Australia. In the game of Monopoly, the great dread for the player is to land on a property with very high rent to pay. In Squatter, the great dread is “general drought”. That dread is very real for many of our rural communities in Australia right now.
I thank God for the people involved in our Church’s drought relief project. They are ministering to human need in the name of the Lord. They are also raising awareness of this often “hidden” disaster in our country.
God bless you as you take part in this work of love for our neighbours.
Jesus was once asked, “Which commandment is the first of all?” He answered, ‘The first is, “Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.” The second is this, “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.’ (Mark 12)
Bishop Lutheran Church of Australia, Queensland District.