在哈維颱風中經歷神的信實
Experiencing God through Hurricane Harvey

文喬芷
Peggy Man

我的名字叫文喬芷,與家人移民到休士頓已經多年。於是 決定自購了一間位於樓下單位的公寓,與媽媽同住,一直 也平安無事。直至8 月27 日(主日)經歷了我人生第一 次的風暴「走難」。哈維颱風在星期五登陸休士頓後,大 部分的教會已經決定取消主日崇拜。

就在那主日早上,我照常七時起床,當我的腳一踏在地上, 就發現地毯已經濕透了,馬上跑去另一房間叫醒熟睡的媽 媽。當我走出客廳的時候,已經發現整個客廳的水位已經 有一吋高了,在慌忙中,我立刻叫我媽媽把重要的文件搬 到高處,而我就立刻把所有的拖電板挪開,以防流電。感 謝主,在收拾之際,我也差點觸電,當我在拔掉其中一個 插頭的時候,已經聽到和感到漏電的聲音和震動。

那時,因她要吃藥,我立刻催促我媽媽盡快吃早餐。當時, 我也十分緊張,媽媽已經84 歲,雖然身體健壯,動作和 思想也開始比較緩慢,她根本反應不過來,也不願意走。 話還未了,水已經浸到我的腳踝,加上手機和家中互聯網 也沒有訊號。我見情況不妙,於是我立刻收拾媽媽的藥, 塞了兩條短褲丶兩件T-shirt 丶內衣褲和公司的手提電腦, 就準備離開。水來得太快,已經差不多高到電制之處,所 以我強迫媽媽立刻離開。雨開始再降下。

出門之際,看到整個停車場也被大水淹到車輪之上,知道 無法開車了,唯一的方法就是步行離開。但我怎能帶著我 年邁的媽媽登山涉水呢?於是只好帶著媽媽上二樓的隣居 求助,進入隣居的單位不到十分鐘,聽到巨大聲響,整個 公寓也立時沒有電了。雨還是停不了,我們都在二樓的陽 台等待,希望雨勢微弱一點就起行去酒店。

過了三十分鐘,雨稍緩慢。正當我們一行人準備離開之際, 另一隣居的獨居老太太自覺沒辦法離開,因為她有一頭又 大又老的狗應該不能游水。於是,我就再次進入我的單位, 拿一個大水盆,把她的狗放進去,一路帶著它逃難。當時 的水已經淹過我整條腿了。

水位持續上漲,我們大約走了二十分鐘,終於了到大街, 神在那刻就差派民間自願組織團隊,用兩架車,載拯救我 們到酒店。我們總算脫離危險了,感謝神。我在酒店住了 兩天,就搬到別人家寄住,直到現在。

今天是9/5,我的家還是封鎖區,據新聞報導,那區還是 水位高漲,很多污水渠也爆烈,呼籲人畜暫時也不應進該 區。

經過今次的風災,我更明白神是我唯一的依靠。雖然我失 去家中的一切,也沒有買洪水保險。但我深信上帝還存留 我一口氣,必有更大更好的事工為我預備,求主讓我有更 大的信心去面對前路,過一個謙卑的人生,愛主愛人,榮 耀我的神。

*文喬芷姊妹是德州市糖城 (Sugarland, Texas)恩典華人浸信㑹的㑹友

I am Peggy. My mom and I moved to Houston many years ago and we settled down there by buying the ground floor unit of a condo. We lived peacefully in that unit up until August 27 (Sunday) when, for the first time in my life, I experienced being a “Victim of a Hurricane”. Hurricane Harvey struck Houston on a Friday but churches had started to inform members of their congregations that Worship Services that Sunday would be cancelled.

On that eventful Sunday, I woke up at my regular 7 o’clock hour. When I got off bed, I realized that the carpet was completely wet. So, I went to wake up my mom sleeping in another room. While passing through the living room, I discovered that there was already an inch of water there. I panicked and called out to my mom to gather all the important things and place them on a high place while I pulled all the electrical plugs to prevent electrical shock. However, as I was pulling out one of the plugs from the outlet socket, I could hear a sizzling sound and felt a tingling sensation. Praise God He spared me from being electrocuted!

I then urged my 84 year-old mom to have her breakfast as quickly as she could as she had to take her medication. I was especially anxious for her. Although she was relatively healthy for her age, her reaction to events and her movements were slow. She refused to leave. As I was speaking to her, water had reached my ankle. My cellphone and wi-fi services were disrupted. I realized then that we were in dire circumstances. I quickly gathered all of her medication, packed two shorts, two Tshirts and underwear and together with my company’s laptop, and got ready to rush out of the unit. But the water level kept rising. By now, it had reached the level where the electrical outlets were. I forced my mom to evacuate immediately while the rain outside started to pour again.

What I saw outside shocked me. The parking lot was already full of water – up to the level of the wheels of vehicles. I knew I could not get to my car and drive away. I decided then that the only way out was to walk to safety and seek help. But as I considered my mom, I recognized that that was impossible for her. My only alternative was to walk my mom up to the second floor neighbors and sought help. Moments later, we heard a loud sound and the entire building went dark. The rain kept falling and we waited at the balcony of the second floor hoping that the rain would let up enough for us to take refuge in a hotel.

Thirty minutes passed. The rain slowed. But as the five of us were getting ready to leave, one other elderly neighbor felt she could not leave her old and huge pet dog behind. She surmised that it was unable to swim and make it out. She adamantly decided to stay. Recognizing her predicament, I immediately went back to my unit and got a big tub and put the dog in it. It floated along with us and became a refugee just like us! By then the water level had reached our waist.

The water level kept on rising. We kept walking for about twenty minutes and reached the main road. God sent the Civil Defense Team and took us to safety in a hotel in two vehicles. Praise God! We stayed at the hotel for two days and were later relocated to stay with a family until now.

Today is September 5. My home remained in a sealed area. According to news reports, water level in that area is still high. Many bunds there are breached and the authorities are advising people not to enter that area.

Having experienced the effects of this hurricane, I have come to understand that God is my only refuge and help. Even though I may have lost every thing as I did not have flood insurance for my home, I firmly believe that God has preserved me for a greater mission and assignment. May the Lord give me the faith to face my future, to live a life of humility, and to love God and people. All Glory to God!

*Peggy is a member of the Grace Chinese Baptist Church in Sugarland, Texas.

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