USA (MNN) — Though Hurricane Gustav didn't cause as much damage as expected, "There are many areas where so many trees have been blown down that it's going to take a while first to clean that up before they're able to do the water, the electricity, and things so people can move back home. Many folks are displaced and will be for up to another month," said Suz Hyde from International Bible Society-Send the Light.
Already, they have responded to the emotional and spiritual needs of those in the disaster zone. "Their world has changed, and they need help figuring out how to
maneuver through the emotions and the psychological games that go through your head when you are in this kind of environment," said Hyde. IBS-STL has consulted specialists to find the
issues that people face as they process disaster situations.
For people who have never interacted with Scripture, an entire Bible can be overwhelming and they may not know where to find help within its pages, Hyde explained. "That's one reason we focus on very specific disaster material where it speaks directly to what they are going through today." Their book, When Your Whole World Changes, has 30 daily readings that do just that. Nearly 10,000 of those books have been sent down
as part of the 21,000 total books they've provided so far.
IBS-STL has trained ministry teams who will be handing out their literature as long as it is needed. That team is also working with therapists who can help people that the ministry team refers to them.
"Just being in a windstorm causes people to resurface their fears, their anxiety. If they don't have their trust in the Lord, they don't know what to trust in. They know they can't trust in the weather," said Hyde.
Therapists helping disaster survivors said it took a month for Katrina survivors to come for help. This time, after Gustav, people began seeking help just two days after
the storm. Pray for strength for therapists who've been working since Katrina hit. "Of course, we would never turn down donations if people want to help replenish our disaster fund so that we are able to respond with more of God's Word to more places," Hyde said.