Why I Have Not Posted
It’s been just over a month since I last posted…yes, that’s quite a while.
Lots has been going on at many levels that warranted my attention making the time to write limited, and when available, truthfully, the inspiration simply was not there.
The most impactful of all events during this period was Hurricane Dorian, in my opinion better termed “Terrocane” Dorian because of the terror and destruction it unleashed on my country, the Bahamas.
“Terrocane” Dorian Arrives
On Sunday. September 1st, Category 5 “Terrocane” Dorian, packing winds of 185 mph with gusts over 220 mph and storm surge of up to 25 feet, made landfall on our island of Abaco, then a day later on our island of Grand Bahama where it lingered for over 36 hours, more than 18 of which it sat almost stationary, before leaving.
“Terrocane” Dorian was the strongest Atlantic storm on record, tied only with the 1935 hurricane that hit the Florida Keys, and the strongest hurricane on record to hit the Bahamas.
“Terrocane” Dorian Destroys
“Terrocane” Dorian left UNPRECEDENTED DEATH, and CATASTROPHIC DEVASTATION.
To date, the official death count as a result of Dorian’s passage is 58 and expected to rise as there are still 600 persons missing. Approximately 13,000 homes were severely damaged or totally destroyed, about 70,000 people are homeless, and the overall damage has been estimated at over $7,000,000,000 US Dollars.
“Unbelievable! Indescribable! Unfathomable! Mind-blowing! Terrorizing! Gut wrenching! Heartbroken! Dazed! Confused! Never seen anything like it! It’s like a bomb was dropped! I have nothing left but I thank God I’m alive! I saw the water sweep people away! My son was snatched out of my arms! My mother fell off the roof into the surge! I can’t locate my sister and father! The windows of my house blew out with a boom! The roof flew off the shelter! The walls fell in! Water filled the entire bottom floor of my house up to the ceiling! Bodies were everywhere! The stench of death was in the air! Gone, everything once recognizable is gone! I want to wake up from this nightmare!”
That’s just a mini sample of some of the sentiments expressed by persons after the storm, and though riveting in and of themselves, even those words pale in their adequacy to reflect and express what transpired experientially and materially.
The Nightmare Of A Missing Relative
My family experienced first-hand the nightmare of having a missing relative after the storm.
One of my aunts, a medical doctor who lives on the island of Grand Bahama but held a clinic on the island of Abaco remained on Abaco to ride out the storm.
I spoke with her on the Sunday morning that “Terrocane” Dorian began making landfall and lost all contact with her that afternoon because of the storm.
As a result of this, my family and I had no way of finding out how she fared during the storm or if she was dead or live after it left.
Although we were outwardly calm and kept the faith, not knowing my aunt’s condition or whereabouts was a harrowing experience for me and my family, especially considering the fact that the area in which she stayed was decimated…the word was “Marsh Harbor Abaco is gone!”
Seeing all the pictures and videos of devastation and raging flood waters, and hearing multiple stories of bare survival, death, and destruction via social media and over our local television networks made the situation even more dire, yet we remained prayerful and hopeful and did all we could to find out anything at all about her well-being.
It wasn’t until 3 days later on Wednesday evening that I received a text message from an anonymous number telling me that my aunt said to let me and the family know that she was okay, she made it to a shelter and needed help to leave Abaco.
Once I verified that the information was legitimate, I let my family know my aunt was okay and the rejoicing began…we are so, so grateful to the Lord for keeping her safe and sparing her life in the midst of all the danger… Praise His Name!
Back Home Safe
The ensuing miraculous chain of events orchestrated by God that enabled my aunt to leave Abaco and arrive safely in Nassau, our capital, within the next 24 hours in the midst of thousands and thousands of people trying to do the same thing is too much too relay at this time, but again, I must express thanks and praise to God for His Grace and Favor.
God’s arm of protection was around my aunt in so many ways, especially considering that the entire second floor of the two-story building where she stayed was completely destroyed and she had absolutely no idea of the destruction that had taken place just above her head
It was not until when during the eye of the storm, fearing for their lives, her landlord and his wife who lived in that space fled downstairs to seek shelter in their other apartment unit and knocked on my aunt’s door in transit letting her know what had happened, that she realized what had occurred.
Our story has a happy ending and we are eternally grateful to the Lord for that, but many other persons were not as fortunate.
Because of this, even in the midst of our rejoicing, we mourn with the persons who lost family members to death and with those who still have them missing, and are saddened by the multiple reports of persons who have lost their homes, businesses and all their material possessions…it’s been a true bitter/sweet experience.
“Terrocane” Dorian has wreaked tremendous havoc and destruction on our Abaco and Grand Bahama islands and in the lives of the people who inhabited those islands.
While addressing the United Nations General Assembly last week, our Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert A. Minnis described Hurricane Dorian as a “generational tragedy” and called on world leaders to take urgent action to combat the global climate crisis. This is critical not only for our nation, but for many other nations of the world.
In an effort to constructively and proactively move forward, Prime Minister, Minnis has established a new government ministry, the “Ministry of Disaster Preparedness, Management and Reconstruction”, to lead recovery and development efforts, as well as future disaster responses in the country.
If you want a better idea of what has happened and what is happening now in the Bahamas in terms of recovery and relief efforts, you can click here to start a Google Search – “Hurricane Dorian Bahamas”
Grateful For Assistance
The people of my country and I are extremely grateful for the overwhelming love, concern, support, encouragement, prayer and multi-level assistance that has poured in, and continues to pour in to our nation.
Although a resourceful and resilient people, we need as much help from the international community as we can possibly get as we walk down this almost overwhelming never-before-travelled road of disaster relief, recovery and re-building.
I ask that you remember our nation in your prayers and if moved in your heart to assist in some way, here’s a link https://www.bahamas.com/relief to some of the official organizations and agencies that are able to facilitate the same.
Some ask, “Why did God allow this to happen?”
Thoughts, opinions, theories and prophetic words abound, but the truth of the matter is that no one will fully knows or fully understands why…perhaps God may reveal it at the end of time, should He choose to do so.
What I do however know is that no matter what perplexing phenomena occurs in this earth realm, we as Believers must trust God’s Character, Wisdom and Sovereignty, respect the fact that His Ways are Higher than our ways and His Thoughts Higher than our thoughts, and accept the fact that He is God and we are not.
“Terrocane” Dorian left UNPRECEDENTED DEATH, and CATASTROPHIC DEVASTATION on our islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama, but by God’s Grace, Wisdom, Mercy, and Provision, we will heal, rebuild and arise.
MARCH ON BAHAMALAND
“The Lord is good,
A stronghold in the day of trouble;
And He knows those who trust in Him.”
Nahum 1:7 – NKJV
Peace & Blessings,
Copyright © 2019 by Kim Sweeting, Author of “Unwalled Words” Blog, All rights reserved.
Picture courtesy of “monfocus” – http://www.pixabay.com
Video “March On Bahamaland” Feat. Angelique Sabrina courtesy of REV from Cable Bahamas