Home Away From Home

Devastation in Convent, La

As I listened to the news last night and this morning about the destruction in Convent, La I couldn’t help but remember our time in nearby Gonzales, only 12 miles from the devastation. Actually we had planned to stay in an RV park in Convent but when we called they didn’t have any available sites so we ended up staying at Lamar-Dixon Expo Center. Lamar-Dixon is basically a parking lot for RV’s and apparently the majority of the RV’s in the area we were in were transient workers like many of the residents in the park hit by the tornado.

In the spring we often have tornado warnings in North Carolina and occasionally we have tornado watches and yes, we have the infrequent tornado. While we were in Gonzales we had our first warning while traveling and to say it was unnerving is quite the understatement. After all I was in an RV and I had read other’s accounts of being in an RV during a warning. I turned the weather radio on and listened to its incessant chatter until the warning was lifted. Fortunately there was never a watch so we didn’t need to evacuate.

Last night I watched the videos of Sugar Hill RV Park in Convent and remembered riding by there on our way to visit plantations in the area. My heart goes out to the people affected, many of them homeless now. To the families of the ones who were lost I can’t tell you how much you have been in my thoughts and prayers. To the injured I pray for complete healing both physically and emotionally.

Our days are never promised and this horrific storm just re-emphasizes this. As I sit in my warm and safe home today with constant warnings that the storm is coming to our area I gaze around at my “stuff” – yes, stuff. Our possessions can so easily be replaced but the people in Convent lost a lot more than stuff last night so let’s keep them all in our prayers and thoughts today and tomorrow and for a long time. The tornado in Convent is gone but the destruction remains. For some it will be a matter of putting the pieces back together. For others life has been forever altered.

Schools all over Eastern North Carolina are being dismissed early because of the coming storm. I am on the coast and it is overcast, windy and the water is churning already with white caps close to the shore. Our Lord tells us to be anxious for nothing and to put our trust in Him. Today I must continually hold that in my heart.

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