At 6:00am this last Saturday, we received (in Colorado) an early morning call from our son in Hawaii. Unbeknownst to us, during the wee hours of the morning, a massive earthquake in Chile had begun a possible wave of destruction across the Pacific basin.
Our son was packing up important papers and things that matter most, including his wife and three children, to move to higher ground. A Tsunami was on its way. They were well prepared, and had in their car three days of clothing, food, water, and cash.
They were gathered with many friends in a high level parking lot, watching the ocean and waiting for nearly 5 hours as they anticipated a wall of water scheduled to hit the islands. We all prayed and waited. We listened to the radio, watched the news, and waited.
This got me thinking about what I would take with me if I only had an hour (or less) to leave. It reminded me also of when we lived in California. We had prepared well and one dawn morning when the earthquake shook the ground, I grabbed our 72 hour pack and ran out the door. I was trained well and had rehearsed this drill many times. As I found the corner of the back yard, the sun just coming up, there I stood in my underwear- ALONE. That’s right, my wife and four children (including baby twins) were still inside the shaking house. It’s a good thing I’m not a fireman!!
We sure put a lot of hours into our occupations. We spend a lot of money on “things” that make us more comfortable and happy. When the earth shakes and the tsunami is on its way, what we have with us then is really all we need to carry on- come what may.
Though we are very saddened by the plight of the Chilean people, we were gratified that our son’s little family in Hawaii was spared from disaster. Nevertheless, it would do us all good to ponder what matters most, and what would be in our car if we had to leave all of our other belongings behind. That will tell us a lot about what matters most to us. I hope you don’t forget your spouse and kids like I did!