I don’t want to minimize the hardship many people have endured and are experiencing in Florida and in our own state. Some are still without power and some in Florida suffered great damage due to Hurricane Irma. That said, I do believe that God showed mercy to us and answered prayer.

The original strength of the hurricane combined with its projected path led many of the “experts” (quotes used intentionally) to predict very dire consequences for Florida and Georgia. Some headlines blared that this was going to be the most catastrophic hurricane ever to hit the Florida peninsula. Perhaps had conditions remained as they were this would have been the case but, thankfully, it was not. I’ve seen reports where some very slight changes in the hurricanes path made a great difference.

For this we should be grateful to God. While much damage was done, it did not meet the level of destructive expectation many had. I am thankful that prayers were answered. We should continue to pray for those dealing with the storm’s aftermath and also want to consider how we might be of help in the future.

But let us also give thanks to God for taking a category 5 hurricane and robbing it of a portion of its strength. For that we prayed and the Lord heard and the Lord answered. Praise be to God!

Paul Bankson

Paul was born and raised in Birmingham, AL and graduated from Auburn University in 1986 with a degree in Business Administration. It was at Auburn that he met his wife, Connie. They were married in Ft. Lauderdale, FL and moved to Jackson, MS where he attended Reformed Theological Seminary graduating with a Master of Divinity in 1991. Upon graduation, Paul served as a Campus Minister with RUF, the campus ministry of the PCA, at Tennessee-Martin where the Banksons lived for 5 years. They moved to Macon, GA in 1996 to work with RUF at Mercer University and then Paul joined the pastoral staff at First Presbyterian Church of Macon as an Assistant Pastor in 1999. In 2004, Paul and his family moved to Warner Robins where he served as a church planter and then organizing Pastor of Houston Lake Presbyterian Church. In December 2014 Paul completed a Doctor of Ministry degree through Reformed Theological Seminary of Orlando. Paul and Connie have three sons, Andrew (23), Stephen (20), and Matthew (15). Paul enjoys grilling, camping with his family, and Auburn sports (War Eagle!).