Friday, December 12, 2008

90 Days

90 Days. 3 months. A season. 2160 Hours. 12 weeks. It was the end of summer then. It's soon Christmas now (It even snowed on the Gulf Coast you know). Perceptions of time are interesting. Today is Ike Day 90. It was interesting reflecting last evening over dinner with new friends from Galveston, that I feel I have known for years. For Galvestonians, it seemed like the days of living by generator power went on and on. It was a month. It seemed like the days of waiting in long lines of check points to get into Galveston went on for a long time. Two weeks. Distribution Centers. 30 days. Eating MRE's. Had one last week.

Homelessness for 1000's of people. 90 days. Some still waiting to hear if they can even rebuild their homes. 90 days. Disruption of normalcy and life as it was. 90 days. Loss of jobs. 90 days. Dealing with piles of forms and long lines and hours on the phone with FEMA and insurance companies. 90 days. Trying to come to grips with loss and turmoil. 90 days. Struggling with fear. 90 days. Wondering what next. 90 days. Struggling marriages. 90 days. Worrying about paying the bills when jobs are gone. 90 days. Wondering, 'Why Has this happened to me?'. 90 days. A mission field ripe for the harvest. 90 days.

The hard part for most though, is the 90 days is really only the beginning. On a practical level, a fortunate few people had flood, winstorm, and home owners insurance, and some of them have even been able to get started with repairs. I have not found very many of them. Almost all of the people I have come in contact with have gotten little from the government, nothing from insurance and are trying to figure out what next with out any real resources. The truth is, this new 'normal', called disruption, does not have an end in sight for many.

The continuous and ongoing and uncertainty of when will things be 'OK' for people here, is wearing on people. This is all too familiar for me, as we are still working with families in New Orleans 3-1/4 years later who are still wondering the answer to this question.

A widow lady we are helping to rebuild her home named Mickey June told me today that last night she got a notice under her motel room door telling her she had to be out today. She had been told by FEMA that she had been extended for her room until, 1/3, but it took her hours on the phone, as she packed up, to get the paperwork straightened out. So she then unpacked again to stay 3 more weeks in the motel room. She has a FEMA traielr in the front yard, but is waiting for the utilities hooked up.

We served a man named David today at his mothers house. She died 3 days before the storm. Her home had 4 feet of water in it. His home had was alos flooded and he is temporarily living 30 miles away on the mainland. It was a painful story for him to share, about all the loss at all the levels that he has experienced. But it was a priviledge to put my hand on him and lift him up prayer today.

It is so reassuring though to know that God is moving in it all. Pray for:
- Families spending Christmas in motel rooms.
- Struggling marriages.
- People to put their Hope in Jesus.

No comments: