I made up my mind. I had watched hours and hours on the TV. Tragedy, destruction, death. Complete life change in a moment for far too many. I was going to pack up and go help! The devastation was too overwhelming for me, and after all, What Would Jesus Do? Jesus would pack up and go to Moore, Oklahoma.
But I didn't go. I couldn't understand. It felt right, it seemed right. As I was talking through this with one of the voices in my head, God whispered to me, “You will have your own tornado.” And six weeks later, our family did.
My experience with the tragedy is minimal compared to what my sister in law and her family have endured, and are still enduring. The devastation is far spreading, and this time, I did pack up and go. But I went to San Antonio instead.
It was the evening of July 4th. My sister-in-law and her side of the family had just spent the day watching parades and sipping lemonade. Mom and Dad (affectionately known as Mimi and Poppy) left before the fireworks. It had been a long day, and it was a long drive home. That commute ended too close to home when another driver veered out of his highway lane, and hit Mimi and Poppy head-on, not even giving them time to brake.
At the age of 63, Mimi, a mother, a grandmother, a wife, a sister, an aunt, a church-planter, a Jesus-lover, died. Poppy was burned on a majority of his body and endured having both of his legs amputated above the knee and is fighting for his life, moment by moment until they family had to let him go be with the Lord, and his beloved wife.
My husband and I walked into the hospital waiting room. Poppy was in skin-grafting surgery. A family, broken, in heart and spirit, sprawled throughout the waiting room. Tears, memories, shock, and the business of death loomed. It was my own tornado.
The damage still wide-spread. The rubble, and people's hearts buried deep within. Questions and doubts, fears and life re-defined.
I'm learning through this and what my own family is enduring right now that I love and serve a God that often I do not understand. His ways and his thoughts and his ideas of provision and what is best for me are so hard to grasp in my life.
I can only imagine what my sister-in-law and her siblings are feeling. Life is full of such much uncertainity, I can't imagine not having God as the strong pavement beneath my feet. Without God, this family would never be able to recover. With God, there is hope.
If you have no hope, then you have no God.
You are Loved.