We have had a lot of models lately for how humans pick up the pieces when storms of one kind or another completely disrupt their lives. First, there is the shock of the new reality and knowing that for better or worse things will never be the same again. Then there may be the triage of gathering together a few pieces that can be carried along to the new reality. We ask ourselves what irreplaceable things, if any, we would think to gather and what we would need to survive the next day or two. (I remember the night our house burned down and my next door neighbor gave me a little bag with a nightgown, a toothbrush, and a jar of blusher cream. She said that that should get me through to the next morning! And it did, along with the great gift of family and friends being there.)
The hardest part of picking up pieces after storms and losses is the mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual energy it takes to start over and find a new vision. At first, we can only see the loss. The sheer fatigue of all this is not something that can be fixed simply by dollars. It is not something that others can do for us. It is the will we must find in ourselves to go on and to go forward.
Somewhere in the Scriptures I remember Moses needing someone to hold his arms up when he could no longer do it for himself. Sometimes we need others to hold the hope for us until we can again hold it for ourselves. That is what the human family has always figured out we need to do amid disasters and uncertainty. Perhaps this model of helping one another, following Harvey and Irma, will remind us that a house divided against itself cannot stand; and, instead, we must find a way to gather up the pieces together into a new mosaic. This is true for a relationship, a family, a business, a community, and a nation.