Monday, May 3, 2010

Little Miracles Abound

A house at the end of Pleasant Grove Rd. A photograph by Chena Garrison Spears. Reprinted with permission.

This weekend will go down as one most Middle Tennesseans will remember for a very long time. Early Saturday morning the rain began to fall and it didn't stop falling until Sunday evening. The experts are still collecting the data but by all appearances this rainfall was a record-breaker. Someone from the Army Corps of Engineers said this was a "once in a 1,000 years flood."

Garrett's Creek Church. A photograph by Chena Garrison Spears. Reprinted with permission.

Thankfully, our family and close friends are all okay. No one was hurt and very minimal property damage has been reported - a little gravel washed away, a tree or two down. Others were not so lucky. Several people in the mid-state have died and hundreds, if not thousands, are sleeping in shelters tonight because their homes are more than a little wet.

Dutch Creek spills out of its banks in front of the house where my husband grew up.

Many were stranded for hours on flooded interstates (would you have ever thought that the interstates would flood?) and in the upper rooms of their houses just waiting for the waters to recede or help to come.

Thinking of all the rescues and rescuers on Sunday evening caused me to recall an old joke - bear with me a moment. When you are raised the daughter of a preacher you hear all the latest church/religious jokes. I promise I am not making light of this terrible situation. I will have a point.

A man is standing on his front porch when some neighbors in a car drive up and warn of possible flooding and offer him a ride. He says that he will just stay put. God will protect and save him. An hour later the water is flowing throughout the first floor of his home and he is looking out an upstairs window. A boat approaches the house and two rescuers offer to take the man to safety. Still the man refuses stating that God will protect and save. An hour later the man has crawled upon his roof as his house in now nearly completely submerged. An emergency helicopter hovers overhead and pleads with the man to climb aboard. Again, he refuses. God will save and protect. An hour later the man dies and goes to heaven where he asks St. Peter why God had failed him. St. Peter replied that God had not failed to protect him. He had provided three different means of rescue for the man. Why had the man not taken advantage of these?

Dutch Creek - the house to the right (behind the tree branches) is the Old House, where John and I lived for the first ten years we were married.

Sometimes we want to think of God's miracles only in terms of grand events, when we should remember that His hand can just as easily be felt in the small gifts - the volunteer rescue workers who tend to the needs of their neighbors for hours upon hours before even checking on their own homes, the churches that open their doors to shelter and feed those in need and the church members who make this possible, the one who loans a wetvac to his neighbor and then stays to help clean up a flooded basement, and those who would risk their own life to save a stranger.

A small stream that runs through a ditch spills out into the road - oh so minor flooding compared to places further south like Nashville.

He is within us and leads us to do good, to help our neighbors. Can you even imagine a world where His spirit doesn't exist? To me, this would be the greatest disaster.


An Ordinary Mom said...

I am so grateful you are safe. And I am grateful for my relationship with God! Good luck with all the aftermath!

Tyla said...

Thank you, "Lucy". Fortunately, we had very little damage in my town. It was much worse further south. It really was a terrible, unexpected event. But then again most terrible things that happen are unexpected. Thanks again for your concern.