Hurricane People – Amended

I am so my Mama – she missed her calling as she has been calling the shots on the weather since Apollo 11 left the first pile of “moon trash” thus adjusting our weather patterns from that point forward.  She (quite correctly though I am not certain it had anything to do with the “moon trash”) said that Camille was going to be a problem in 1969. And to my knowledge, she has not missed being spot on in her tracking for every storm of significance since then. Silly me, I even called this morning to see if she and Dad were watching The Weather Channel. His response was something to the effect of “why would you even ask something like that?”

Off topic – sorry – what makes me so much her is guess who else has been watching TWC (both last night and since about 4 this morning). You got it.  Me.

I have reasons – personal ones. For one, I have good friends in North Carolina, Delaware and Maine. My niece and her husband live in South Carolina (who managed to dodge this bullet, thankfully). Folks I care about.  The State also has business relationships we depend on that are in the path of the storm. I know they have their emergency ops stood up (we received proper notification of that yesterday) but I also know from experience that the plan is only the starting point. See Katrina. Fortunately listening to the media, I do believe that many of the lessons learned from Katrina are being exercised today and I am thankful for that.

My summer adventures have taken me to several of the places that are nervously preparing and waiting today. I was in New York City on a baseball adventure with Phillip in July and in Vermont/Maine just a week ago for State business.  Here are some pictures of some of the places we were and am wondering about those and what they will be like come Monday.  Pray for those folks in harms way. Also pray for those who seem to be missing the sanctified common sense to get off the roads and beaches and get somewhere safe (obviously – they did not learn anything from Camille and Katrina!).

Casco Bay, Portland ME
Freeport ME (home of LL Bean)
Portland Head Light, Portland ME (featured in “The Perfect Storm”)
Lake Champlain, Burlington VT
Phillip – Governor’s Island NYC
Ground Zero NYC
Lady Liberty – New York Harbor

Hurricane People

Mississippians are resilient types (I looked resilient up – see definition below) when it comes to hurricanes. In my lifetime, I have experienced the likes of Camille and Katrina (and many bad but lesser storms).  I have stayed up all night and listened to the wind and the rain and have prayed through and about those events. I know also about standing up emergency operations as the scientists and the emergency management agencies direct us based on best available scientific and weather data. And I know the gut level fear of watching and waiting to hear from loved ones in the storm’s aftermath.

I don’t sleep much which means many mornings around 2AM I am up checking baseball scores, the overnight headlines, and the weather (so much for reading the morning paper and watching GMA or the Today Show). When I turned on the TV this morning, I saw the breaking devastation in Japan with the 8.9 earthquake and the tsunami in its aftermath – I cannot imagine what that is like (not a lot of warning for earthquakes) or watching/experiencing a 6-12 foot wall of water just coming at you.  I cannot imagine what the folks of Hawaii and other Pacific islands and the Pacific Rim folks (including the west coast of the US) are experiencing other than I know from a government official’s perspective of the kinds of things that are kicking in. And I know my heart is heavy for everyone involved.

I am praying for all impacted and involved, for the first responders, the medical folks, the search and rescue systems, the people losing their livelihoods and homes, the people who are waiting to see what happens next, and the people on the backside who support the first responders. And I pray that we will not be insensitive to their needs.

We know God knows what is happening here. He is never surprised by any of these events. I pray He will use this terrible tragedy in a mighty way. And I pray that God’s folks (that is me and those like me) will rise up to do what needs to be done to help in the recovery of the impacted areas.

Romans 8:28 reminds us: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”  I do not yet know how God will use this event but I know He will and I know right now this minute we are called to pray for those involved. And I pray that some of the Mississippi resiliency will prevail among those in the direct path of this disaster as they face the recovery days ahead.

re·sil·ient Adjective   /riˈzilyənt/

  • (of a substance or object) Able to recoil or spring back into shape after bending, stretching, or being compressed
  • (of a person or animal) Able to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions