Apr 29, 2011

We are fine, but many others are not

Thanks to the many of you who e-mailed, commented or Tweeted trying to make sure that we are all okay at our house in Birmingham.

 Pratt City, a suburb of Birmingham (Marvin Gentry)

We are, but many people we know, many neighbors, many friends of friends, as well as total strangers, are struggling with everything from trees on their houses to lost pets to loss of life.

 Pleasant Grove, a suburb of Birmingham and home to several of my co-workers (Butch Dill)

As we sat and watched the storm coverage -- with our electronics charging and bike helmets at the ready in the basement -- we were horrified to see landmark after landmark, street after street, business after business destroyed.

Tuscaloosa, home of the Tide and where many of my friends went to college (Dusty Compton)

I didn't go to work on Wednesday because the boys' school was without power, but most of the TV coverage of the massive mile-wide tornado that came past downtown came directly from the weather cameras that are installed on top of my office building.

 Pratt City, a suburb of Birmingham and home to my friend Vickie and her family (Butch Dill)

If I HAD been at work as the storm came through, I can't imagine how terrified I would have been. (You may have seen me post on Twitter that the tornado had roared by just three miles north of my office.) A co-worker took this picture from the 18th floor of our building as she watched in amazement at the passing storm:

Another co-worker took this one at the airport at almost exactly the same time as she waited to board her plane home to Texas:

(Deborah Catley)

Our church sent out an e-mail yesterday that included "Effective Ways to Pray," and while I know that not everyone is a pray-er, if you are so inclined, I think this is a great way to make sure you cover all the bases ... for people like me, who tend to get a little distracted and off-topic when they pray.

1. Pray for the victims - Father, please give those in need hope and healing. May they know Your presence and care in every way. Grant healing and protection for those who are wounded and in need.

Another hard-hit Alabama town, Concord (Jeff Roberts)

2. Pray for first responders - Lord, provide protection and wisdom to those police officers, firefighters and emergency personnel who are rescuing those in trauma.

Pratt City (Butch Dill)

3. Pray for those who are caring for victims - God, grant wisdom, strength and compassion to medical professionals and counselors who are caring for the injured and the ones who have suffered loss.

4. Pray for the Church - God, empower Your Church with the capacity to love like Jesus and effectively care for the hurting. Open doors to share the Gospel with those affected by this tragic moment.

A church and debris in Cullman, home to my friend Melanie's parents (Brennen Smith)



Wade's World said...

I'm so glad that you and your family are safe. I'm praying for all those affected by such a terrible tragedy.

Carry Grace said...

I'm so glad that you are your family are okay. We have family and close friends in Hoover and they are all fine. It's so sad to see all that has happened to our Sweet Home Alabama.

Erin said...

praying ... and so very, very sad for everyone affected.

Amanda said...

Many prayers sent out. My dad lives in Cusseta and I was terrified it'd get closer! So glad you're family is ok!

Rachel said...

So glad you guys are okay!! It's been a crazy week.

Maureen said...

Oh, I just can't even wrap my head around it. Relieved to read that you and yours are safe. I can't even imagine how the fear before and the "what ifs" after affect each and everyone involved.

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