Day: September 20, 2019

Refuge in the Storm

By Chad Mattingly in Church Life on September 20, 2019

The Lord is our refuge and strength, a very present help in times of trouble. Therefore, do not fear. Psalm 46:1-2

Good morning dear church family and friends. As I sit here at my desk, the world outside my window seems as it should be in a late summer. The sun is shining, the birds are singing and the air is warm and thick with a slight hint of reprieve from the summer’s heat. Yet appearances can be deceiving. In the wake of another, “unprecedented” flood many of our neighbors are suffering this morning in our community.

Yesterday, as the torrents of rain fell and the waters rose I decided to blow up my kayak and try to check on some of my neighbors in Elm Grove Village. At almost every house as I ventured deeper into the neighborhood, I found folks standing helplessly in their garage or on their front steps knee deep in water. I would call out to them asking if they were okay. Some expressed anger, others disbelief, but many were so distraught that they could not even answer.

They needed refuge and reassurance that everything was going to be okay, that the sun would shine again. Words of hope are hard to find in moments of tragedy and loss, yet one of our member whose house flooded yesterday for the second time in five months shared this thought. She said, “This is just a frail house made of wood, but this is not my home. My home is wherever my family and friends are. My home is secure even now.” Wise and brave words from someone watching her freshly laid hardwood floors being torn out and piled in her front yard.

Four families from our congregation were flooded yesterday. The houses of Al and Charlotte Bilderback, George, Sabina and Rachel Reynolds, Chan, Karleigh, Ashlynn and Abby Pollack, and Rick, Christy and Even Janacek all took on water yesterday. Today they start the process of rebuilding.

The Bilderbacks and Janaceks have the greatest need right now. Both are working to remove any carpets, area rugs and baseboards in effort of limiting the water damage. The Reynolds have already torn out their “new” floors and are assessing the baseboards and drywall, but could use some support. Chan needs some help tearing out carpet and lugging out a wet area rug. Contact me at 417-773-9812 or the church office at 281-360-7910 if you’d like to help.

In the coming days, I hope that we can be a refuge of support for these families. That we can meet these hurting friends with helping hands, hot meals, calls of encouragement and prayers.