This is a simple story of a simple family trying to slow down this crazy life and enjoy the "moments"...

Monday, July 11, 2011

I Can't Complain....

Around these here parts, people are excitedly getting ready to move into FEMA trailers.

I've heard that some of them will be quite nice.  Quite decent, anyway.
Some will have 3 bedrooms...others will have one.
BUT all will have air conditioning (which is SO IMPORTANT considering it got up to 102 today and doesn't look much better in the weeks to come...)  and running water and some sort of a space that people can call "their own."

How many families will be using these? 
I'm not sure...but quite a few I think.

The man who's in charge of our alarm systems is also partly in charge of "Tent City."

According to my buddy....there are currently over ONE HUNDRED tornado-displaced-people living in tents on a piece of private land that some kind man has given them for refuge.  

One hundred.

Among these people are infants (yup....there are pack 'n plays in those tents), families, elderly, singles, teenagers and more.   
My friend told me that a few weeks ago his group of "helpers" were able to construct a building with 2 showers and 2 toilets that the "city" has been using.

He said that there is a very organized woman living there whom they've dubbed "the mayor".  Apparently she has a few pre-paid cell phones for people to use in emergency situations.

This friend of mine emphasized the gratitude these people had for that building....for being able to stay on one piece of land....for the food and drink donations that have been coming their way.

102 degrees.
Pack 'n plays.

Have I SERIOUSLY caught myself privately loudly often quietly grumbling about not yet having furniture?  

Have I SERIOUSLY mumbled not-so-nice words into my soft cushy pillow when RH slams frying pans into the walls and sounds like a bar-brawl makes a little noise in the kitchen (which is easy to hear because our new place only has super-70's pocket doors) when he wakes up to go into work at 4:30am?

Have I SERIOUSLY gotten frustrated to the point of tears when the back hatch on my working car finally totally broke and the kids (and groceries and boxes from the warehouse) have to go in and out through the back window Dukes-of-Hazzard style?

Ummmm.......embarrassingly enough......yes.

So as I would say to my kids....I say to myself here...


My friend and I got to go for a run and have a panting-infused chat this week.  

We were discussing perspectives....and how important they were to make us realize just how amazingly wonderfully blessed we have been.

Now wait....I've said before and I say it now....I KNOW I am blessed.
Know know know know know it.

But sometimes it's unfortunately easy to get caught up and halfway buried in the muck and mire of LIFE....and that's when perspective comes in handy.

Being in a tornado is not such a great thing.
Having your house ripped apart while you're in it....not so great either.
Not knowing where your child and nephew and aunt and uncle are......pretty very incredibly bad.
But....I CANNOT complain.

I have my family.
All of 'em.
I have a solid home (with a basement!).

The people who are still living in hotels?  They can complain.

The people who are moving for an indefinite amount time into FEMA trailers?  They can complain.

But....people still living in shelters can complain more.

But people living in tents can complain more.

But people who are STILL RIGHT NOW in the hospital trying to fight off weird fungal infections from horrible tornado injuries can complain more.

But people who have lost friends and family can complain more.

But people who have lost their homes, jobs, and family members can complain more.

But that poor woman who lost her husband and two children in Home Depot....well....what can I even say about her?  
I pray for her daily.  
I don't know her personally....but I've heard she seems so very strong and brave....and I can't even begin to imagine how strong and brave she will have to be every second of every day for the rest of her life.

A blessing for sure.

Last week our pastor taught out of Luke again.  
He chatted about a verse I've heard many times....but I heard it differently this time (must have been my perspective!).

"For everyone to whom much is given, 
from him much will be required; 
and to whom much has been committed,
of him they will ask the more."
Luke 12:48

I just put 3 amazing gifts from God to bed.
I peeked in on my husband, sleeping hard because he's been working so hard at his stable business.
I am sitting in an air conditioned house.

This list could go on for pages and chapters and many things He has given me.

So many things I am thankful for.
So many things I'm guilty of griping about....ugggggh.

Time to square my shoulders....
put on my "big-girl panties".....
get my mind out of my "issues" and onto the possibilities of what I can do to help.

Directly after the tornado when we came out of the store-room, Bennett started kind of flipping out.
I remember taking his face in my hands to talk to him, but that's all I recall.

My mother-in-law says that I told him:
"That's ENOUGH, Bennett.  God kept you safe because He has a purpose for you...and that purpose is NOT to sit here and freak out.  He kept you safe because He has something for you to do....and you job is going to be to find out what that is.  Right now your job is to hold the dog and keep her safe so that Uncle John and I can go check on our neighbors."

(I don't remember saying that....but I have to say I like it.  I  am relatively sure that God let his Holy Spirit speak through me at that moment though...and I'm pretty darn grateful and in awe of that.)

So....recap of this super long rambling overly-detailed possibly-incoherent post.

Much has been given and committed to me.
God saved me for a purpose.
My job is to find it.


Jenny Zauche said...

Shannon! I love your blog. Thanks for sharing with all of us. I am keeping you in prayer! Stay strong and faithful!

Vicki said...

I've been to the tent city. It made my so very sad to know that people are having to live like that while I sit here in my air conditioning and complain because it won't get below 80° and runs all day long. Thanks for posting this and making me rethink about the things I should be thankful for.