Counting our blessings the end of 2015! The recent storm Goliath (last weekend) did cause some severe flooding in many areas, and there were 6 people nearby who died when trying to cross low water crossings at the Gasconade River, that had become flooded. (A low water crossing is basically where a road or driveway lies through a creek, but instead of a bridge, there is just a solid gravel or cement-like area where the water is really shallow and you can drive through. Lots of people have driveways with low water crossings around here). But during flooding, the water can rise quickly. It can become difficult to determine how high or swift the water is. Our property is not prone to flooding as far as location goes, so other than the large amount of rain – we probably received 11 or so inches here – and a little water in our basement, our personal lives were not affected that much:) Amazingly, our road happens to not have any low water crossings/flood-prone bridges between our home and two nearby cities, so we were able to get groceries, etc. without event after the storm was over.
I-44 is flooded and consequently is closed, which Mom and I figured out really fast after I pulled out onto highway 63 to run our weekly errands on Tuesday. There was a ton of traffic, because post-storm travelers who were headed between Springfield and St Louis were detoured through Rolla to take highway 63 instead of I-44. Our neighbors and friends, Mr. and Mrs. E., said that their low water crossing was much higher than it has ever been in their nearly 20 years of living on their property. Much too dangerous too cross, by the way. Not realizing how high it was, and long before it had reached its peak amount of water, Mr. E. attempted to cross the creek in their vehicle as usual, but his van died on the other side of the crossing because the water was too high. He got out and walked back across the once mellow trickle, but the water was already up to his waist at that point and getting dangerously rapid. We are thankful for the Lord’s protection of his life.
Our basement started to flood, but Dad resourcefully drilled some drains and used our shop-vac to vacuum a lot of water out from under the cement before it all came up. Most of our stuff that made it through the damage during our vacation last month didn’t even get wet.
In all, life is pretty much the same for us. The day was beautiful and crisp; the stars were shining when I went out to get firewood a little while ago. We helped Dad lay the floor for our downstairs’ office today. Dad has been doing a wonderful job remodeling on the office and it looks MUCH better now. We also painted the walls a light green color and Dad put the white crown molding up yesterday.
Highlights from the past week (not year):
1.We had 8 Chinese friends, as well as Mr. and Mrs. E., over for dinner in Christmas day. We were so blessed to meet these new friends and enjoy authentic Chinese soups and spicy tofu in addition to our Turkey supper. Afterwards, there were lots of good conversations (in multiple languages) and we played games of Musical Chairs and Apples to Apples.
2. We had some other Christian friends (also neighbors) the H’s over for dinner on Saturday as it was storming. While they were here, another family (the P’s), whom we met at the local Farmer’s Market last Summer, called and said that they had been up in Rolla grocery shopping and were having car trouble. We ended up having two families over that evening!
3. After Dad and Mr. H. left to take the other family back to their home in Licking, Mother and some of us girls went to the basement to vacuum water and move the articles that we didn’t want to get wet to a dry(er) location. Dad returned safely home later on, and the next day he said that he had stayed up until around 3:30 vacuuming water with our 5-gallon shop vac and drilling holes to drain the water. He said that he probably emptied the shop vac 50 times that night. I’m so grateful that he did that.
Looking back over the past year, I realize that God’s hand was guiding us and directing our steps. One year ago tonight (December 31st) we did not know where or even if we would be established this year. Many details were yet up in the air, or so it seemed.
I can only marvel at the Lord’s providential hand working through history – on a grand scale; every little detail that He so careful orchestrated, every network, myriads upon myriads of details, big and small, every path that He made to cross, how He has faithfully taken care of His people and sanctified them- and shake my head, and realize that this is His story.
“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.
…. Keep back your servant also from presumptuous
sins; let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.” – From Psalm 19