8 Sep 2010

The value of friends

Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their work:

If one falls down,
his friend can help him up.
But pity the man who falls
and has no one to help him up!

Ecclesiastes 4:9-19
So as the waters recede the cleanup begins. And what a job it is. To be honest, I would be quite overwhelmed with the magnitude of the task we have in front of us if it weren't for one thing: We have friends to help.

Outside in our garden - can you still call it that - you'll find W and B. They're raking, sweeping and chopping. They're watering everything with detergent to try and minimise the damage caused by the oil slick that covered our land. They're removing oil soaked vegetables and digging the soil. They've been here since this morning and they'll still be here tonight. They're here because they care.

In the kitchen you'll see D. She's cleaning out the cellar. Again. It keeps refilling with water, but maybe this time the water level will have dropped enough for it to stay dry. She's vacuuming and mopping and cleaning. She's hosing down steps and verandahs. She's making cups of tea for the boys and entertaining Jemimah. I am so blessed to have her as a friend.

Friends carry each other's burdens physically, but friends also pray for each other, and I have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of love shown to us by our Christian friends during the last few days. Thank you to those of you who sent messages of support to us, and to those of you who remembered our town in your prayers. I value your friendship.

As we sat in the Community Meeting last night it was easy to appreciate just how blessed we have been through all of the last few days. Our peaceful home remains high and dry, albeit rather chaotic. We have a place to sleep and a place to work. We have food in the cupboard and friends to help with the clean-up. Others have been affected so much harder than we are.

It is amazing how good a warm home feels when you have been without heating for a few days. You appreciate the electricity more when it is reconnected after a while as well. A cup of tea tastes fantastic when the water once again flows from the tap. It is incredible what a difference these things make to our every day lives. To have been without them makes me appreciate what I have all the more.

It's the little things that make our lives comfortable, isn't it?

I'm appreciating them so much more today. And I'm appreciating my friends more as well. They were here when we fell down, and they were here to help us up. We are blessed indeed.


  1. So glad you have help with the clean up. When you are back home we must get a cuppa together somewhere, here or there, in between.


  2. So true! Love that you have friends to help you with what must be a massive task. Love that you can be thankful even through this. xx

  3. Yes, good friends are a blessing indeed! Praise God for the people that are able to be physically there for you right now. Yes, when you go without the essentials (water, heat ect) you do appreciate them so much more! xx

  4. So heartening to read this post, Jeanne. How did the other house you mentioned fair? it sounded as though water might get into it. Is all the garden oily or will there be some good tilth in the soil as sometimes happens on flood plains after floods?
    God is so mindful of our human needs and frailty to give us friends to help bear the burdens. Still thinking of you and the many unhoused during this flooding ♥

  5. Ruby, there is 50l of oil all over our land. We're waiting for the EPA to give advice over the next few days. As it is, it smells like a petrol refinery in here - worse outside. We took all the veges out of the kitchen garden this morning. :(

    Our other house was badly flooded - it backs onto the river. They ripped the carpet out yesterday. Hope the insurance covers it, but not likely with flood damage. Most of our furniture was okay though - we managed to elevate most of it above the water.

    Thanks for caring.

  6. Oh Jeanne! sorry to hear about all this:( I just cannot understand why insurance companies don't cover floods!
    Glad that you have some great friends to help you through this! And you must be so disappointed as am I about your garden which you've shown us so many times via your blog:(

  7. I too love the fact that God intended us to be a part of a body...we are not to be on our own, but sharing in the joys and trials of each others' lives. It is such a full and wonderful experience on either side of the coin.

    Encouraged to hear your experience.

  8. so glad you have friends to help. Hope you are all doing OK. You have such an amazing attitude towards life. You are an inspiration to me. xo

  9. In times of trouble the friend with a smile & a helping hand bring hope & a blessing with them. So glad you have people to help with the clean~up. It's harder than the damage. ♥

  10. Thumbs down to the lack of insurence for flooding. That happened to a lot of Emerald people in the big flood a couple of years ago, including family.

  11. It truly makes life so much easier when we have friends who will be by our side. It's good to know that you are ok but the clean up must be hard, you are in my thoughts and prayers....

  12. Your attitude and ability to appreciate what you have despite of the downfall are amazing...
    I've featured you here. You give a lot of yourself to others, and for that we are very grateful.


  13. I'm SO thankful that YOU are okay.

    Things, though important are only temporary... sometimes it's painful to realize this. I'm so thankful that you had friends who were willing to help :)

    amy in peru


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