|Matthew 7: 24-25 – “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.”|
One of my favorite memories of our farm in Iowa was the creek that ran along side it. We played on the bank, waded in the water, even ice skated in the winter (after spending hours clearing the snow from the ice.) We had been told the creek had not flooded in at least 50 years, and for the first six years or so that we lived there, it didn’t. Oh, the water got high sometimes, and even got on the yard once or twice, but never really came over the banks. That is until the summer I was 10 years old. Our house sat back from the edge of the creek a ways, and on one cloudy summer day we suddenly had over 12 inches of water running in the front door and out the back. Almost as quickly as the water rose, we were surrounded by church friends and neighbors who came to help move furniture, sweep and clean the mess, make sure our barn animals were safe, and care for us with food and drinks. The water started to recede before sunset, but mom and dad insisted on all of us kids sleeping elsewhere. I quickly packed an overnight bag and was shuttled off to the home of a friend from 4H. My siblings went to other friends’ homes, but mom and dad stayed at our house in case the water came back up. I doubt they slept at all that night. The next week was spent cleaning and scrubbing the dirty water away that had been in almost every room. We were very fortunate that there was no major structural damage and after lots of scrubbing, was inhabitable again. However, 10 days later it flooded again – this time 18 inches deep and covering the electrical outlets in every room. My mother was so exhausted, I remember her sitting in the middle of the kitchen, sobbing. Once again, friends came and helped carry the burden of cleaning and putting our home back together. We were blessed not once but twice within two weeks by people who genuinely loved and cared for us. Our family was built on the rock of Christian friendships.
Prayer: Thank you, Lord, that my childhood home was built on the solid rock of faith and friendship. You protected us from harm and provided the care and help we needed that summer. Thank you that you guided our steps and kept us safe during a very challenging time. Help me to be the type of friend who reaches out to others in their time of need, just as those friends did for us so many years ago.
– Betty Gossell