I’ve helped to lead the “everything else” group alongside Paul Herndon – a guy I used to give the head nod to while walking my kids to the Alamo. Very quickly, I have come to understand that these few days working together, working this “bigger than all of us” challenge with an amazing team has moved us from aquantiances to brothers.
Our area includes all of the areas that span across the north part of Houston. We’ve entered homes from Tomball to Humble and many in between. The map image shows where we’ve been, where we are and where we’re headed. Our job has been to help divide and conquer the coordination of these homes, to resource our crews, to solve challenges, and to minister to the families.
The teams in the homes get to experience the depth with the families they are serving. Paul and I experience the width. We’ve asked so many times, “can you tell me your story?,” or “how are you doing?” or “what else can we do for you?” And we’ve had time as we drive to the next house to think and pray and reflect and ache and hurt and rejoice. Here’s a bit of my thoughts of what I’ve seen accross this collective of communities:
A flood can disrupt, destroy and change an ecosystem forever. All over the Houston area, this science lesson is playing out – its vivid, confrontational, raw, an emotional punch in the face, an escalating series of shocks to the system. It hurts.
But there’s more to the story – a flood has a positive impact in the end as it redistributes nutrients and seeds to new places, resulting in an improved ecosystem by allowing growth and diversity beyond the pre-flood condition.
I am watching this play out. The people of this area are the seeds and the flood has moved so many of us beyond the comfortable and predictable patterns that we kept just a few days ago. Strangers come to unfamiliar streets with tools in hand and a few hours later we become forever linked through a physical and emotional journey marked with sheetrock sludge, wet piles of memories strung across the yard and a supply of grit that somehow keeps up with the overwhelming task at hand. I have no idea what this new creation will end up looking like in the end, but I know that we will all be forever changed.
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