photo from the Kansas City Star
I'm sure you're well aware of what happened yesterday evening in a little place know as Joplin, Mo. The images are beyond heart wrenching. They stir up that sore, lump-in-your-throat sensation. Joplin is not that far away from where I live. It's definitely not far from where most of our families live. It feels like an arm's length away right now. I feel so deeply for people who live there and had to experience Mother Nature at her strongest. I have lived in Kansas all my life and fortunately haven't had an encounter to this degree ever. People are lost. They are broken. Some are extremely lucky to have their lives, but they no longer have anything but that. This has happened already this year to several other cities. To several other communities. To several other families.
After a weekend of Rapture talk, it's interesting that a natural disaster of this level comes about. I have to ask, "What really is happening here?" Storms, earthquakes, tsunamis and floods are getting stronger and more frequent. We have many scientific explanations for this and what we've done to our planet to create this domino effect. Yet still...I can't help but think it's all a little creepy. Maybe it's me and the manner in which my own thoughts can spiral into end of the world scenarios when putting all these pieces together, but I miss those moments when you're a kid and you don't wonder about these things. When you don't fear these situations. When the end of times doesn't exist because, well... you're a kid. Time will never end.
Right now, it seems like Mother Nature is openly calling us out. She's pissed and has every right to be. She's awake and roaring. We humans are so miniscule to her brute force and we are repeatedly reminded of this.
The tornado that ripped through Joplin was an F-4. An F-4! Images splatter our TV screens where the helpless notion of how you even begin to rebuild is overwhelming. However, out of this always comes strength from humankind. We tend to be a motivated and self sufficient species. Standing up when we have been repeatedly knocked down. Brushing off the dirt, stopping the bleeding from our cuts, nursing our bruises and then extending our hands and helping our neighbors stand up beside us. There is a long road ahead for the clean up and rebuilding of Joplin. There is also a lot of strength that will arise to do just that.