60 Weeks of Gratitude - Week 5
Sometimes being grateful is as simple as looking around a house and appreciating the walls that protect us from the wind and the ceiling that protects us from the rain. Storms ripped through the South this week and a tornado touched down in a nearby town, leaving devastation. Jeff was driving through the path of the storm, as it was bearing down, skirting just ahead of it. He made it safely home and only realized the next day, as he drove through Griffin, how close to the storm he was. Our power flickered, and the trees along the fence line swayed like a chorus line taking a bow before snapping upright. We sheltered in the girls’ bathroom. The storm raged. Dunkan was out of hand, barking with every flash of lightning, while Beau sat and watched, taking his cue from us rather than his brother. Then it was gone. The rain stopped in the flash of a second, the wind dissipated, and an eerie silence fell. Across the street, a tree was uprooted and soon neighbors were out cutting it apart and clearing it from the road.
I grew up in Illinois, in a stretch of the Midwest that was often called Tornado Alley. I only witnessed damage from one small tornado in all the years I lived there. It hit one farm and took off the second floor. Now, within three years, the area around my home has suffered from two significant tornados and I have seen the true power of nature. In March of 2121, an EF-4 tornado ripped through Newnan, Georgia, where Jeff and I lived until 2015. The landscape of the community was transformed, and entire neighborhoods were flattened. The tornado that hit Alabama and Georgia was an EF-3 but, from the pictures, it was equally terrible. People died, people lost homes, cars were destroyed, and entire communities were changed in an afternoon. Newnan is still recovering and Griffin is still in shock, not even fully aware of the damage.
(NONE of these pictures are mine, they are from various news organizations and individuals).
If you pray, please pray for those who lost loved ones, their homes, and their possessions. If you are local and have a chainsaw, join the effort, the clean-up is ongoing. For all of us, look around your home, be it grand or simple, and appreciate the walls and the roof that shelter you.