We had plans. They weren’t fancy— but still…there was a plan.
After work, my husband and I were to take care of some adulting stuff—mapping out finances, thinking through schedules, and making dinner— including the beets and carrots that were freshly harvested from our backyard garden.
We went to bed, knowing the next day’s plan…and then… the waters came.
I was supposed to wake up in the morning with refinancing a mortgage on my mind. I, instead, opened my eyes to the sound of my husband urgently calling, “you need to get up.” I sprang out of bed, remembering that we had warded off torrential rain the night before. Some water was collected, but it had begun receding when I retired for the night. I went to bed thinking, “See. It’s just another pesky storm”.
That next morning, the panic in my husband’s voice told me something had gone terribly wrong. I ran to the window to peek through the blinds. I saw rushing water—water where the grass was just a few hours earlier. I ran to the back porch to get a bigger picture of what was happening. I saw explosive water coming through the berm; man-made boundaries meant to protect us from this very thing. The people who built the dike near our home had a plan for stopping water from invading the living space of the property line.
In the following moments, as we quickly escaped to higher ground on our second floor, knowing everything on our first floor (including our vehicles outside) was a complete loss, the words from the author of Proverbs kept ringing in my head, “..we can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps…”
Why had God determined that my steps that day included losing our home to flooding rather than making dinner for my husband? I have no idea. While it doesn’t make sense to me, I know that I can trust Him. I know that Jesus, who is in charge of the order of my steps, is still far better than me having complete control.
After those waters came for us, we were rescued by local heroes from Franklin Township. Since the surreal boat ride— across what used to be a street, we met two girls, complete strangers to one another, Cynthia and Illiana. These girls were bound to one another because they had both escaped the flooding waters. They were bound by both circumstance and experience—the same circumstance and experience we found ourselves in.
We got to experience firsthand how our community of coworkers, friends, and strangers can come together and walk beside us in the midst of catastrophe. They wrapped their arms around us and carried us, providing for our physical, emotional, and financial needs.
It has been a truly beautiful and humbling experience.
If God had gone with my plan, I would likely have experienced more mundane, run-of-the-mill, life stuff. But, instead, I have a wonderful story. A story of being rescued by heroes. A story of being carried by God’s people. An account of the Lord’s faithfulness.
I would have never made plans to lose my home to a flood and have to rely on others for some of my most basic needs. But because the Lord ordered my steps that way, my faith has grown stronger. For that, I am most thankful.
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