A guest post by Buddy Ellisor, resident of Wimberley

A New Perspective

Today we are ankle deep in mud hosing down personal artifacts in the front yard of our friends’ house. The remains of most of their possessions are heaped in piles by the street just like all of their neighbors. A wall of water tore through this normally tranquil part of Wimberley valley late Saturday night, a river-like tsunami that claimed everything in its path. But our friends are luckier than most. Although they had nine feet of water in their home, it was being rented with a contract to purchase. And they got out alive.

Wimberley valley is an idyllic setting: sharply rising hills bisected by live water creeks and the Blanco River. The river is normally so shallow that you can walk across it in most places. But after a week of rain, the ground became saturated and all it took was ten inches of rainfall upriver to create a wall of water with nowhere to go. Flood stage in Wimberley is 13 feet. The river rose 26 feet in one hour before cresting at 41 feet. Two hundred year-old cypress trees were snapped like twigs and hurled downriver. The force of water lifted houses from their foundations and vehicles were upended like match box toys.

It was Memorial day weekend. Vacation homes and B&Bs were rented to capacity in anticipation of the last weekend before summer begins. Wimberley is a tourist Mecca for many, particularly from the coastal population centers. Although only a three hour drive from Houston, it could not be more different. The terrain is hilly and rocky, the climate arid, the vegetation more like Greece than south Texas. Even the insects are different: scorpions and centipedes in place of roaches and mosquitoes.

Several families from Corpus Christi rented a home across the Blanco near River Road. Their home was lifted off its piles and rammed against the Ranch Road 12 bridge, tearing it into pieces. One man was found critically injured and a dog was discovered in the top of a tree. The other eight people are still missing.

Another friend also lives along the river. His response to my text was “Lost everything”. He has just encountered God personally within the last year. So his new perspective was summed up in, “The Lord has a new plan for me.” So as we struggle with our first world problems of what we will have for dinner or which movie to see this weekend, we remember the people of Wimberley that are struggling with the numbing pain of dislocation. There is something about lives being disrupted that brings on a new perspective.

If you would like to help, for donations: barnabasconnects.org

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