I've been crying or on the verge of tears most of the day. It started this morning when I saw a report on CNN about a man in Mississippi that lost his wife in flood waters. He had to let her hand go and watch her get carried away while he clung to his children or grandchildren. They have replayed that clip over and over again and each time it provokes a new flood of tears.
Not only does his anguish break my heart, but I am also humbled by the fact that no one I know has a story like that. We have all gotten out safe and are protected.
Another reason for the emotion is that some of the reality of what lies ahead is hitting me. I don't mean the financial aspects - though that is a concern - I mean that it may be anywhere from a month to 4 months (on the conservative side) before life starts to get back to normal and I get to see all my friends and family again on a regular basis. Because of the nature of my dad's job, it might be that long before he is with us, as well.
I was also able to get in touch with many of my friends for the first time today...so that is yet another reason for the emotion.
My eyes are a bit swollen, and hurt a little. But still, the Lord is very near.
I spoke with my small group leader and his wife earlier today and we were just sharing about what the Lord has been showing and saying over the past few days. I told him about how I could see prior preparation for this and how very near the Lord has been during this time.
About 2 years ago, while listening to John Piper's poem on the book of Job, I prayed this prayer:
"Lord, whatever I have to give up or you have to take away to get me where you want me to be, do it." That has been a consistent theme in my prayer time...yet being the woman of flesh that I am I know there are things He's shown me that needed to go that I held on to. Yet still I prayed. I joked with my group leader saying "I didn't know when I prayed that it would bring a hurricane."
I don't know that it is really that much of a joke though.
Certainly I can't know for sure that this storm and its effects is God's answer to my prayer...I do know that His ways are not my ways and it is not outside the realm of possiblity, at least I can not rule out that His intention for me in this is to "get there."
I pray I respond appropriately.
Even with that revelation, the Lord continues to show me how tightly I cling to "my stuff". Just before typing this my sister-in-law was talking to my uncle about job opportunities here in Dallas. My uncle was encouraging her to look into it. I hollared from the other room "Don't convince her to move here with the babies (the kiddos)!" In my heart I said "We;ve lost everything else, I can't lose the kids too." But I know that is not the heart attitude I should have. I should even hold my nieces and nephew loosely and not insist that we live 5 minutes away from each other always. The Lord knows what is best and He is at work...I need to trust Him more.
Thank you Lord for showing me my heart, for continually revealing what is there and being so faithful to speak your truth to me. Thank you also for my friends and family, for their safety and for allowing us to stay in touch though we are spread all over. Please lead, guide and direct us and continue to keep us connected and united. We are your body whether we are in the same town or across the country. Also, be glorified in our response to what you have chosen to deprive us of...let me glorify you in what you chose to deprive me of...and help us to surrender to your ways whatever that looks like.