Let’s look at the difference between an emergency and a crisis.

An emergency is something that happens that needs immediate attention. So your kid’s broke his arm. That’s gonna cause a little bit of a disruption of your life. But it’s not a long-term event. The difference is, yes we have to take care of it immediately. We have to go. You had it X-rayed. There’s going to be a cast. There’s going to be some inconvenience. But it doesn’t disrupt every single moment of your life for right now. The difference is a crisis does. If someone dies, you’re looking at that as a long-term effect. That person now is no longer in your life. When that happens… How do I pay the taxes? How do I do grocery shopping? Whatever their tools and their tasks were, now those have to be taken up by someone different. So a crisis is a long-term impact on what life is going to be like where an emergency as a short-term situation that needs to be taken care of immediately but it’s not going to affect the rest of your life.

But how do we define the magnitude? Research tells us that when a catastrophic event takes place, a flood or fires, earthquakes. Those types of things that affect a large-scale amount of people is when a disaster is at its worst. You see when catastrophic events happen, there’s a very small percentage that are physically injured or that have died compared to the amount of emotional impact that it takes on people.

The other thing that makes an incident more impactful is when children are involved. If a child is killed in an incident. In a critical crisis incident, not only is their parents involved but also the firefighters that are trying to save them. The police department, the onlookers, the children that are in school with that child, the teacher, the soccer coach. Everyone is affected when a child’s involved. You’ll find that the services for children are significantly larger than for a middle-aged or even an older person. Why? Because we can all think back to ourselves, ‘What if it was my child?’ And you feel so bad for those people. So as a trained professional in crisis intervention, and knowing God’s promises, you walk alongside those parents. You walk alongside those teachers, those other children, to help them cope with what they’re doing and what they’re going through. How do you respond to that classroom? How do you respond to that soccer team? How are the other brothers and sisters doing? As someone who’s trained to go through that, which we’re going to explore, you can make a difference. You can help them understand that what they’re going through right now is normal and give them tools to cope with the next day.