Day 22: Day Off

By Carol Hawkins


As we arrived in Oklahoma City on Saturday, I was overwhelmed with emotion.  We rode through a street with massive destruction.  I honestly think we rode past the school that all those little lives were lost.  So devastating to so many lives.  I had a hard time continuing the last five miles to the Church that night.  

One thing that I kept asking myself was why rebuild after such devastation?  Why would people continue to live in areas that are prone to this type of disaster.  Seriously, after hurricanes, Earthquakes, tsunamis, flooding, why do we as a species not run away from it?  One thought kept coming back to me, and no it is not faith so much as, hope. Humans have this gift of hope.  No other animal truly hold onto hope.

We get up every day knowing full well that life is fragile and not guaranteed, yet we walk out the door anyway.  Why do we do this?  Hope, hope for a better tomorrow, hope for a better world, hope for equality.  Whatever our hope is, we tend to hold onto it as though it is our life source.  

Some will argue that hope and faith are interconnected.  I believe hope is not the same as faith, but that they are connected, fundamentally.  Faith is the hope we have in powers outside of ourself.  Hope is faith that life will work out.

So even though natural disasters are devastating, those that choose to rebuild are focused primarily on hope.  I have not really had a natural disaster change my life as so many in other areas have, but I do understand that idea of hope.  Once you hit that lowest spot in your life, hope is the only thing that can motivate you to pull yourself out.


One Comment

  • Thank you for the comment. It is most interesting to see how we as a people act and react to a disaster of this nature. As a first responder to the scene, my spirit was changed with the things that was witnessed. it was surreal! I cannot put it into words. Our Officers, Firemen, first responders….they were there, even before the storm had passed, ready and willing to do what it took and they did it. I stood at the site with the young lady (Abbey) that owned the day care children and saved 7 children by her bravery and was amazed that even a small dog could survive there, the building, once a 12 foot high shopping center, was splintered wood/glass and metal, rubble was not a tall as my knees. Standing on the exact spot, I ask Abbey, is this it, she said yes. There was just no way she and 7 little children could have lived… But they did. I looked in all 4 directions and could only see a water tower in the far distance, absolutely nothing else stood: cars stacked, twisted and mangled and mixed with the homes, sitting on top of what was left, sometimes as many as 10 cars in one pile. The dust in the air, the trauma and so many great responders, I will never forget that time. As I walked the streets, people were going through what was left. We talked together, cried and prayed. All were thankful that they were alive and the concern for those that did not make it was very emotional. many knew the families that lost loved ones. As a Chaplain, my job is to be available to help, in any way that I could, but at the end of the day, I was the one that was blessed. Strong, caring people that had lost everything. Nothing left! Yes, many will rebuild, Moore is their home, relationships and family are there, some will move. I do not understand why this happened any more than anyone else. My prayers go out daily to every one and as time passes my job will be to give comfort as best I can to a wonderful and loving people as we work through this process. The Lord is with us, we will recover. Hope is faith that life will work out and it will. God Bless all the Fuller Cyclist that helped on this trip. You are appreciated and we are pleased to help make your trip a blessing. Chaplain Clyde Caldwell, OKCPD.


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