Looking Back >Katrina Refugees: September 1st, 2005

Day 4

Today dawned clear and beautiful and I hugged my children, thankful they are safe and comfortable. So many mothers are waiting with their children to be evacuated in sweltering temperatures, fearing for their safety and wondering when they will have food and water and shelter. It seems that the gates of hell have been opened in the bowels of New Orleans and evil is running amuck. I am horrified and disgusted at the reports of violence and anarchy coming out of the city. What tragedy that our national guard and New Orleans police have to fill the role of protectors of the rescue effort rather than being rescuers themselves. Pray for all the innocent who are still trapped in the city and want nothing more than to get their families to safety.

Tonight, as we sit in an air conditioned living room watching football, my heart breaks for all those who are sitting in shelters, surrounded by thousands of other refugees. It all seems surreal, like a nightmare we will wake up from and everything will be the way it was last week. But its not and it never will be. Life on the Gulf Coast has been altered forever.

Jon and I took Jonny to Lackland Air Force base today, to the military hospital. As many of you know, Jonny broke his arm Friday and Jon spent the evening at the emergency room. He needed his follow up appointment this week, and since we couldn’t get back to Keesler Air Force base, we took him here in San Antonio. While we were there, we changed the kids’ medical provider to Lackland and obtained a Power of Attorney for Jon’s mom. Tomorrow I will visit the schools to see about enrolling Daniel and Jonny. We have such limited information to make decisions, but we cannot continue to sit here and do nothing. We will leave the kids here when we do return to Mississippi, because we have no idea when any sense of normalcy will return to our neighborhood.

I long to get involved in the rescue effort. We’re currently waiting for direction from our commands as they continue to assess the situations of everyone involved and begin to make plans for our future operations. However, I’m thinking about volunteering at the local shelters to assist with those who do not have a home to go home to each night. I can’t just sit by in comfort while my neighbors are suffering. I want to offer comfort to the hurting that only God can bring in times like these. Please pray that God would give us wisdom and guidance in what he would have us do.

Continue to pray as our country struggles with how to deal with this situation. Pray for our leaders who must make tough decisions, even as many are politicizing the situation. Pray for the local authorities who are in the midst of the tragedy. Pray for the safety of the authorities. Pray that relief efforts will be quickly coordinated and implemented to the hard hit areas. Sometimes it is overwhelming. But remember, “the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.” (Romans 8:26) When we are struggling with how to pray, the Holy Spirit will help us. God is still in control, even though it seems for so many people that the world has been turned upside down.

In His mercy

Grace & Peace

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About Jill English Johnston

God writes His story on every heart, if we only pause to read it. My heart has lived in a fantasy world since early childhood and am delighted that God has finally brought me to the place where I can bring the fantasies to life through story. I am currently working on a fantasy trilogy (of course) but I also post thoughts, reflections and (hopefully) inspiration to my website: tabletsofhumanhearts.wordpress.com I am a follower of the Rabbi Jesus, married to my best friend and inspiration, and the mother of three incredible children, one daughter and two sons, with one son-in-love. When not writing, I passionately pursue prayer, reading (never enough time to read them all!), and the outdoors. My husband and I both served in the US Navy and have lived/travelled through many states and all over Asia. We both still enjoy travelling, but we really love our home in Schertz, located at the crossroads of Texas, just northeast of San Antonio.
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