23 Jan 2011

Checking in

Hello, my friends,

It is nice to have a little bit of time to be able to check in with you all. So much as happened since I last wrote, and yet I struggle now to know what to say. I do know though that I want to thank each and every one of you for your caring words and prayers through the past week. I so appreciate your friendship.

Things are really hard here. I know that there are some Christians who display incredible strength by their up-beat and positive witness during times of calamity. I'm afraid I am not among their number. Don't get me wrong - my faith, and that of my husband - is strong and secure, but we are really hurting, and I am sure that that shows. It is hard for us to comprehend the utter decimation of our home and business, and one of the great calamities of this natural disaster is the lack of flood insurance that affects many of its victims - us amongst their number.

More than 400 homes - 80% of our Peaceful Town - were inundated by the flood waters that broke the banks of the Avoca River last Friday night. The destruction has to be experienced to be believed. We have all seen the television images of flood affected streets, but the smell and the feel of the river mud cannot really be appreciated until you have actually been through it yourself.

The massive clean-up began when the river waters receeded last Tuesday. We have been overwhelmed by the help we have received from members of our RPCA Church family. More than 35 people have made the 3 1/2 hour journey from Geelong, Frankston and McKinnon to help, and many, many, more have helped with meals, and with washing and ironing mountains of clothing and household linens. Together they have helped us remove carpets and floor boards, wash mud from walls and furniture and unpack miles of books from shelves. They've gurneyed paths, set up computers, replaced electrical sockets, washed out cupboards, pulled out dead plants and more. They've been incredible.

My husband and I have, as yet, no idea what the future holds for our family. In the short term we are working towards having Jemimah return to be with us next weekend. As for other plans, you, like us, will need to wait and see. We would appreciate your prayers.

Thanks for caring.

He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
he drew me out of deep waters.
He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
from my foes, who were too strong for me.
They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
but the LORD was my support.
He brought me out into a spacious place;
he rescued me because he delighted in me.

Psalm 18: 16-19 NIV


  1. Oh, thank you for checking in, Jeanne. I'm sure there are many others waiting to hear from you too.

    Still thinking of you, praying for you, often.


  2. Time to break out another bottle of champers! ♥

    Wish I could be there to drink it with you & sling mud ~ but as I can't our prayers will have to surfice. ♥

  3. Lifting your family up in prayer. I am a frequent reader of your blog, but do not comment much. Just wanted to let you know our family is praying. Many blessings.

  4. So glad you checked in and updated us. I just don't know what to say. I've reminded people to keep you in their prayers and I just hope for you to have A Peaceful Day soon. You've got to be exhausted. Thinking of you...

    Cindy Bee

  5. We DO care, you're right. I'm so glad you are comforted slightly by knowing that, and by being aware of all our thoughts and prayers and hopes for you.

  6. Jeanne

    I've been praying and wondering how you truly fared, {{{}}}
    The utter devastation, so very, very hard to comprehend{{{}}}
    Continuing to pray.

  7. Jeanne:

    Thanks for taking the time to write such a candid update. I know it must have been difficult.

    You all remain in our thoughts and prayers.

  8. so very sorry Jeanne, will continue to hold you all up in prayer.

  9. ((hugs)) Jeanne, we have you in our prayers. I'm so glad to hear from you so that we can better know how to prayer. I can't imagine how difficult this must be.

  10. oh Jeanne,
    I am sure no one can fault you for that hurt. Feeling hurt doesn't make you a weaker Christian. It is just a natural reaction to things going wrong in our lives.

    I will continue to pray for you as you deal with all that has to be done.

  11. Every day when I think of you and imagine you there, I wish I could be there to support you in person. I'm glad to know so many people have been there helping.

    Many people in the Bible suffered and experienced anguish and great sorrow, and we're told there is a time for everything. Don't think the enormity of your trial diminishes the effect your faith will have on others though ... they will still see the hope you have, even through the tears.

    Love, Vanessa

  12. {{Hugs}} to you and yours.
    What a terrible disaster for your town and for your family. The hurt is a very normal reaction. Things like this are a grief which goes through many stages including anger, questioning etc. It is good to hear of the help you have recieved from the brethren. xxxx

  13. My dear Jeanne no one doubts your faith or expects you to be upbeat in the face of your loss, I would probably think you were in denial if you sounded cheery!! Still praying for you lots. How can we help in practical ways? Do you need money to help redo your floors and buy furniture etc? How far are you from Bendigo cause I have a friend down there who is a builder and has often lent his time to help out missions etc and I may be able to get him to help? Please let me know what we can do!!!

  14. Thank you for sharing your heart with us, Jeanne. We will continue to lift you up in prayer as you process this horrible situation, and figure out where to go from here!

  15. Oh Jeanne xoxoxo

    This is tough, really tough.

    We were in Uganda when we first began hearing news about the floods in Brisbane, and then the rest of Australia. Our children were in Brisbane - and it took us a while to contact them to learn if they were safe or not. I cannot describe how it felt to be in a third world country, watching World News about our own home land in such disaster.

    Love and prayers for you xoxo

  16. I have goosebumps from reading this. Thanks for being real. The grief and heartache you must be feeling is just awful to imagine. I'll be praying you can have Jemimah with you again soon. So very sad for you. We're hoping to be in Melbourne late April/early May, would love to catch up with you. Mel xx

  17. We are hurting for you all and we continue to uphold you in our prayers. We lovd you all. xxx

  18. Heartbreaking. I'll be praying for you.

  19. I am so sorry. You'd be right there with David in your sorrows over what you have lost. I pray God directs and provides for you and your family.

  20. Great big giant hugs, Jeanne.

    I think it takes incredible strength to tell people you are hurting. I am thankful to God for an honest friend like you.


  21. Nothing constructive to add, but thinking of you xo

    (Mrs BB)

  22. Having been through a disaster I understand the enormity of what is ahead of you. You will find strength you never knew you had, you will find the courage to get up each day and face whatever is thrown at you and you will make it. The journey will be hard but when you look back on this you will praise the Lord for all that He gave you each day because he will carry you even though to you it will look impossible.

    And don't be afraide to shed a tear or many, tears are all part of the healing. I am reading Job at the moment - Job suffered more than we could imagine, but he always trusted in the Lord.

    In Christ.


  23. Jeanne I am terribly terribly sorry:(
    I just cannot imagine what it's like for you all.
    I will be praying for you, your family and your town....
    God will bring you through this!

    lots of love

  24. I wish I was near to bring food, to bleach floor, just to be there to help. I am praying and will keep praying as you go through this hard time. I won't patronize with cliches--it's going to suck for a while. Do what you have to to keep strong and don't worry about the blog. We're the silent friends when we need to be--just here praying, thinking about you, missing you but rooting for you to come out ok!

  25. My heart goes out to you and the others in your community.

  26. I'm heartbroken to hear what you're going through. so, so trying... oh that the Lord would be gracious and tender in his dealings with you in these days. I will be praying...

    I've been w/o internet for almost a month so I was quite slow in knowing what was happening.

    love to you, dear friend.


  27. Jeanne........there are no words that suffice but know that prayers continue to be lifted up.

  28. You guys are on our prayer list. Hug.

  29. Just wanted to chime in with all the others; I'm not a poster, really, on the blogs I follow, but I've been reading about you and your life and school with your daughter, and making use of your AO exam questions (thanks!!). We're praying for you and your family. - Jenny in Vermont

  30. Jeanne, I ditto what Hopewell wrote. My family and I are praying for you, and you are really on my mind so much. I believe that's the Lord's way of calling me to the only action I can take on your behalf: prayer. I thank God you've had so much help. I continue to pray for peace and strength for you all-- not a false cheerfulness, but a quiet resting in the Lord. Blessings, dear friend.

  31. I'm always struck (and we just read this in family worship time) how Jesus wept when he heard that Lazarus was dead, even though he was about to raise him from the dead. Jesus grieves at the sadness in our broken world, even though He is the conquerer and our hope. Jesus in walking here, knows our pain, and this is why He is the true comforter. Praying for comfort and healing, as you grieve.

  32. Oh, Jeanne. I have tears in my eyes and have to swallow hard. I just cannot really imagine. Your statement about the smell of the mud and having to really experience it lets me know I really have no idea. I know you miss your girl, too. Many prayerful thoughts your way that the clean-up is as quick and as smooth as possible and that you all can find joy in the midst of this. As far as your frame of mind and your spirit--you are still processing it all. It's a huge thing! Much love, Lynn

  33. Hey Jeanne,


    I'll be praying for you...God's strength to you at this time...may He wrap His great arms around you and your family and friends.

    Butter Fly


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