Hurricane Harvey: A True Emergency

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Greetings from a rain soaked Houston, Texas. As most of you may have heard, a hurricane rocked the cities of Rockport, Corpus Christi and Victoria in Texas. While the hurricane barrelled down on those cities, the outer bands of the storm have wreaked havoc on the city of Houston and the surrounding areas.

As I sit here and write this article, I listen to rain pouring down on us and can't help but think about all the people displaced with flooding in their homes. Luckily, as I compose this article...the water has not reached our home. 

A view from the retention pond from 10 am Sunday August 27th.

A view from the retention pond from 10 am Sunday August 27th.

I began writing this article at 4 pm on Sunday the 27th. At that time the rain was relentless and I needed to take a break to feed my daughter and spend some quality time as a family. The rain kept pounding as we played in our game room upstairs. 

Soon, it was time to put my daughter to sleep. She laid down and went to sleep after a little while. This allowed my wife and I to focus on the storm again. By this time, the rain had been constant for four hours.

We were beginning to see a problem brew in the retention pond behind our house. It was rising and rising fast. We then began to worry about the front yard. A quick check of the front revealed a street underwater.

At about 8 pm, we jumped into action and began moving furniture, food and water upstairs. We made sure that we had everything in case our home began to flood. By 10:15 pm, we had completed the task of moving most things upstairs and the storm was still barreling down on us. Luckily by 10:30 pm, the rain gave us some relief and we were able to walk outside and check on the street. 

The break in the rain was needed, because it has allowed the water on the streets to recede and the retention pond behind us has also began to recede. We consider ourselves lucky to still have power, and a home that has not flooded.

After three days of rain in our area, we have received somewhere between 23-27 inches of rain. Thankfully, our neighborhood's drainage system has been able to handle the massive amount of water and our home is currently safe. 

The same cannot be said about many people in the Houston area. Some areas have seen 30 inches of rain and some even saw 20 inches over the course of 5 hours on day two of this storm. That amount of rain was just too much for the streets and gutters to handle. 

This is a true emergency. Normally, when I write about the importance of an emergency fund, I am talking about car repairs, home repairs or loss of a job. Those emergencies seem minor in comparison to a storm like Harvey. 

Emergencies like these, remind us about the important things in life. A flood can damage our homes and destroy some of our 'things,' but we don't care about those things. We want to make sure that our family is fine. We want to make sure that our neighbors are safe. 

We are Reminded: Life is more important than stuff.

I feel like emergencies remind us that life is important and stuff can be replaced, but sometimes we can let our consumerism get the best of us. Sometimes our culture makes it look like stuff is more important than people. 

I haven't seen that in Houston this weekend. There have been so many people that are risking their lives to save other people stranded in their homes. This is the third time that a major flood has occurred in Houston (since I have lived in the area) and every time Houstonians step up and help their fellow man.

Whether you are in the middle of this terrifying storm or reading this somewhere else, take this time to remember the important things in this life. Spend some extra time time with your family. Find time to play with your child or grandchild. Become intentional with your time and start Putting First Things First.

Hopefully, it didn't take a major storm to remind you of the importance of life. Hopefully, you are already finding time to focus on your family. Hopefully,. this is just a reminder that we need to be focusing on the important things in life.

Keep Praying and Thinking About Us In Houston

Note: This article is our most recent status at 4 am on Monday, August 28th. I am thinking about sharing another update on Wednesday to keep everybody informed. Would you be interested in reading another hurricane update? Let me know in the comments section below.

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