These are hard days back home in WV. At least 25 people have died with 44 of the state’s 55 counties recently or currently inundated with flood waters. Houses have been washed off their foundations, roads and bridges washed away, utilities are out.

I’m fortunate that my family is high and dry. My brother had to drive around some flood waters, and the church where he got married flooded, but otherwise things aren’t too bad in Upshur County at the moment. The Banks District Volunteer Fire Department has kept me posted about my home community if you want to click through and see what’s happening near the farm.

Other places have not fared so well.

flood2I have some experience with flooding. When my husband and I first married, we lived in a house on the Waccamaw River in Conway, SC. Heavy rains and storms flooded the road several times, but we just pulled out our chest waders and kept going. Then Hurricane Floyd put water up to the light switches. At the peak of the flood we paddled a kayak through the sliding glass doors into our great room.

Yes, we have some experience with flooding.flood3

But that flood is what sent us packing. Although we were able to salvage the house and received a government grant to hoist it up on stilts, we didn’t really want to live there anymore. So we started job hunting and four months or so after the waters started to rise we settled into a new home with new jobs and a new life in Western North Carolina.

That was more than 17 years ago and to this day we’ll go for a walk, look at the mountains surrounding us, and talk about how glad we are a flood moved us to higher ground.

It’s pretty hard to find a silver lining when you’re standing ankle deep in muck shoveling things you once treasured into a garbage bag. But I want to let those folks who are wondering what to do next know, good things CAN come from a flood. Keep hoping, keep praying, and trust that God can use this, too.

Romans 8:28 – And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.