Thursday, September 24, 2015

Just Like That

"Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away."
James 4:14

Last night my sister called me. I asked her how she was doing, and for the first time, I heard her speechless. She started to say something, but it took three tries before the words finally tumbled out. The house was gone.

The house we grew up in - toast. Literally - it had burnt to the ground. Our parents weren't at home, but the pets inside and everything else was lost. The house, pump-house/shop - all gone. It wasn't just the place I grew up in, the place I went to school at or the place I discovered a myriad of things. It was home. I spent 21 years there. Every wall and corner held a memory and it's hard to fathom that it's not there any more. I know what I feel about it, is nothing compared to what my parents must be going though. They raised 5 kids without running water for 8 years, without a telephone for 10 years, without electricity. They watched their little ones learn to walk, talk and love in that house. A lifetime of memories.

It's hard to imagine the old piano, Dad's 12 string guitar, his banjo, Mom's treadle sewing machine, her cupboard of keepsakes where she put all the treasures we gave her, the 410, the bread table or the storehouse gone, but they are. The chimney my grandpa built in the 70's was still standing last night, but that doesn't really make a dent in the enormity of the loss.

I thought maybe I could help by giving my parents a place to get away from it all - since there's not much else that really can be done, but then I realized they probably don't even have their documents like passports and birth certificates and licenses any more so that won't work for a while either. Besides, they're going to thinking of basic stuff for a while, like clothes to wear, replacing Dad's breathing machine and sorting out where they're going to start over from.

At least the rest of my siblings are there - I know when things happen, you want to know your kids are close and safe, and my parents have that.

"Your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask Him.
Matthew 6:8

And that is real comfort and Hope.