Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Surreal Living

The best word to describe the past 48 hours is surreal. I decided to sit down and spend a few minutes writing to capture some of what we have experienced in the past few days. Pardon my ramblings.
Saturday evening a fire started in Waldo Canyon. A place I have often passed but have never visited. This canyon is near to our new home. 10 days new, still smells of fresh paint new, mostly unpacked new home on the west side of town. We happened upon this lovely home at an estate sale, we felt so blessed and grateful for our new digs. We could not wait to move into this home. This home is situated in Rockrimmon, where we have decided to place the church plant. This home found itself in an evacuation zone Tuesday afternoon.
So, we mostly lived in disbelief that this fire would actually have anything to do with us. Most evenings we would sit together, read updates from news sources, and watch the smoke on the ridge. We had fascinating views of wildlife, but we felt completely separate from this fire. Sure we packed, we videoed our belongings, we prayed, but we didn't face any type of reality that we would be displaced, evacuated, sent away.
Tuesday, we decided to enjoy some AC and take the kids to the movie. We had our dear friend Erika visiting, and we LOVE a good movie. While we were enjoying the movie, the winds shifted, and all hell broke loose. As I came out of the movie, I looked to the sky and saw the largest smoke plume I had ever seen. As I rounded the corner of the mall, the entire ridge was in flames. My heart sunk. I tried to keep composed for the kids, but I could hardly function. As I was driving toward the home, all I thought was why am I driving toward this mess. I had phoned Jason and he was similarly stunned. We met at home and had maybe 15 minutes to pack, give our possession that are dear to us to friends, and leave before the smoke was so oppressive we couldn't breathe. Erika worked hard to keep the kids calm as I frantically packed the most random assortment of clothing I have ever packed. I packed myself maybe one and a half outfits.
10 days before we rented a 26 foot U-haul to carry our belongings to our new home, and we found ourselves driving down the road with our children, Erika, and a few belongings. It was all we needed. We were driving down the road without a destination fleeing a scene I cannot describe in words, but will never forget. Had the movie lasted 30 minutes longer I would have not been permitted home to pack the few belongings we took.
I turned to Jason and said, I think we should go to the Mendicki's home. It was exactly the right decision. Our children have played and romped, laughed, dressed up and played orphan to their hearts content. One of the gang said they hope we don't get to go back home. It will likely be the highlight of their summer. For me, I have been very grieved for the many families losing homes. I have been feeling so confused about how to feel. I understand that the Lord works in our brokenness. I believe He will use this to draw His children to Himself. I do not believe this has taken Him by surprise.
I just don't know what that all means for me. I haven't had a moment to process this. I haven't been able to get my mind around all that has happened. I don't know what to expect in our home when we are finally permitted to go home. I cannot fathom the destruction the smoke has done. I do know the Lord is asking me to open wide my hands with my home, my expectations of the church plant, of what I expected tomorrow to be. I know my fingers are being pried off of my need to be in control, put together, a leader. I know I have the opportunity to trust. I have a hope in the midst of my struggle I need to be ready to share His story, His truth, His comfort.
This has been a difficult year for our family with a move, a traumatic entry into the state, and now this fire. My kids could use your prayers. I could use your prayers. But even in the struggle I know we are exactly where the Lord wants us. I know this is exactly the time, the place, the people He has for us to do life. Easy was never promised, and I have not a single complaint. I just need your prayers that I would seek and find the grace to live honestly in the midst of this trial. To point my children to Jesus, His comfort, and His provision. I'm a prideful person who would much rather give than receive. The Lord is choosing to humble me.
You have all loved us so well with your prayers, texts, and calls. We have had countless offers of homes, help, and support. We have no idea when we will be permitted to see our community again, but we trust the plan. Join us in praying for our community. Please also pray for our church: Westside. If you would like to receive weekly updates please send your email address to: We could certainly use your prayer support for the months to come. After the news reports have left, we will still be here. Random pictures for laughs. I've had enough of the fire pictures to last a lifetime. Thank
you for taking the time to read the lengthy ramblings of a frazzled church planters wife.


erika said...

I love you, dear friend. Thankful you have the most important "things" with you...and praying for your heart.

Mother of Many said...

Thank you sweet friend. You were such a gift in the midst of our chaos!

A place to find encouragement to love your little ones, your husbands and those you come in contact with daily. Two does not have to be terrible. These are years to grow not simply get through!