When Hurricane Matthew made his appearance, he left behind some damage. But, as Winston Churchill said, “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”
I’m a big believer in learning from mistakes and hard times. I tell that to my kids ALL THE TIME.
So here are a few things I’ve learned (or been reminded of) from Hurricane Matthew:
(1) Electricity is a gift and should never be taken for granted. Matthew rolled in Friday morning, really ramping up in the afternoon. And we were fortunate to have our power for most of that day. And then, abruptly around 4:30 pm, it was gone. And we were in the dark for five days. Not fun. Basic things we took for granted just were not there. Like hot showers. The ability to cook. Air conditioning.
(2) Always be prepared. Since we had plenty of warning before Matthew’s arrival, we took steps to prepare. I washed every single load of dirty clothes we had. We filled containers + our bathtub with water. We blew up air mattresses. We got ice. All of these things were a big help during and after the storm!
(3) Trees should never be taken for granted. We lost some beautiful trees in our neighborhood, and pretty much every yard (including my own) was littered with branches, leaves, and moss following the storm. Several of my neighbors had trees fall on their houses, which leads me to my next point.
(4) No matter how bad you think you have it, there’s always someone who has it worse. We lost power for five days. But some people’s houses were destroyed. So, while we were inconvenienced, things could have been much, much worse. I’ve been praying for my neighbors whose homes were destroyed by trees. Across town, other people had flooding and water damage. And it breaks my heart to see the devastation and loss of life in Haiti. I’m so sad for the people of that island nation! I’m praying for their recovery, too.
(5) A crisis reveals what’s truly important. It’s really interesting how everything else came to a stop as we rode out the storm. School and work didn’t happen. We didn’t hear anything about the controversial Presidential election. Sports games were rescheduled. Everything just stopped, and we focused on what was important –> staying safe and making sure our family and friends were safe. Praying for God to protect us and others in the path of the storm.
Things are getting back to normal here in Jacksonville, but I think we are all changed just a bit. We have been reminded that nature can be extremely destructive, and there’s not a lot we can do to prevent it. And we’ve been reminded time and time again that people are more important than things. Period.