I am writing you this post tonight from my home which is really a miracle in itself. You see, Houston is home.
At this very moment, our homes (many not in flood zones) are filling with water and washing away a lifetime of memories and belongings that are held dear.
Our highways are so completely covered in rising water that neighborhoods like mine are surrounded with water with no real reprieve.
We sit anxiously by our phones to listen for life-saving flood and tornado warning alerts unable to rest.
We are straining our eyes into the inky blanket of night looking and listening for the rush of water that shouldn’t ever come, but because of the perfect storm just might.
Our grocery stores and pharmacies are closed because they are inundated with flood waters and we wonder how we will be able to get the necessities if we can’t get out and no one can get in.
Many of us are without power, and some for the foreseeable future.
Even though the rain is softer now, it is still falling and trees that have rain-soaked roots are giving way and toppling over- some narrowly missing our houses, some not.
We are carefully measuring out the food we have to make it last until more comes.
Our churches and schools and airports have closed.
We are hugging our people and telling them everything is going to be alright, when we don’t really know how alright it’s actually going to be.
Houston is so much more than home to me. Houston is HOPE!
Person after person climbing out of rescue boats are not rightly bemoaning all they lost, but giving thanks for the life they have gained.
First responders have volunteered in droves to risk life and limb, literally, to help us…all while they leave their own strong and gracious families at back at home so they can serve and save.
Neighbors and good people from all across this nation have thrown caution to the wind to bring trucks and boats to wade into flood waters and save strangers who need a helping hand. Not because they expect anything in return, but because they love.
Reporters covering the flood suddenly become rescuers and perhaps a little more human to the rest of us as a tears slide down their faces at the courage and smiles of the family in their boat that just lost everything.
Flooded stores and businesses have opened with abbreviated hours amidst threatening flood waters, just to help neighbors with basic needs.
Power crews are working overtime to restore electricity to neighborhoods that have gone dark.
And we are finding that sometimes we learn on the job instead of a flooded classroom. We can be the church when we love our neighbors: smile with them, cry with them, grieve with them.
My sweet friends, thank you for reaching out to those of us in Texas with your love and prayers. They mean far more than you will possibly ever know. Please keep them coming.
As I sit here, typing this I am so grateful to God for all the comforts of home I am still blessed to have amidst all the rising flood waters and rain and tragedy. We’ve had limited damage and are doing okay with allergy-safe food for now. But my heart aches for all those who have lost the comforts of home, who are wet and hungry, and scared. On their behalf, would you help be a voice that advocates for them?
If you feel so inclined, please know that you can help by donating through JJ Watt’s Houston Flood Relief Fund or the Red Cross. As for Texans with food allergies that have been impacted by Hurricane Harvey, please get in touch with your favorite food allergy companies and advocacy organizations to see how they might be able to help.
God bless y’all and thank you for loving on us and praying for us!