Today marks the fourth day since the earthquake in Nepal hit. We as a family, our team members, and the Nepali people are still trying to process all that has happened.
Emotionally it is hard to digest. We were spared great loss and damage in much of our immediate area, and yet within minutes of our home there are fallen buildings, families left homeless, lives lost, and we are all in shock. How we were spared and so many were not is not for us to understand, but we are grateful for the Lord’s hand of protection over our family and friends, and although we have lost thousands of lives, and there is literally billions of dollars worth of damage, it was not as bad as it could have been. At 7 pm last night we regained power and internet in our flat, and after spending nights outside in our tent alongside hundreds of other familes, took a chance and returned to our flat. The tremors are subsiding, though we are still on edge, and still experiencing aftershocks throughout the nights and days (and most likely will for some time).
We knew before moving to Nepal that this could be a possibility, with Nepal resting on 3 fault lines and being overdue for a very large earthquake, and it was a risk we accepted. That being said, it’s impossible to know that it is something you will actually be there to experience, and certainly something you wish never comes. Yet here we are.
I cannot fully articulate to you all the experience itself. We woke up the morning of our son, Ransom’s, 2nd birthday, opened presents, skyped with Dane’s parents, took a trip to the Farmer’s market (in one of the hard hit areas), and returned home. It was a normal and cheerful Saturday morning as we celebrated our son. An hour after returning home, just before noon, sitting in our living room together, it hit, so quickly, so unexpectedly, and without thinking we grabbed our son and bolted from our third floor flat out into our courtyard. I’m amazed looking back how quickly we reacted. We gathered around a tree with our Nepali family and held on tightly as we waited for the earth to stand still. It is a difficult and scary thing to not be able to trust the ground you stand on for stability. To feel it roll beneath you as if you are standing on the deck of a ship in the midst of a large storm, and to see the concrete house you live in, that seems so strong and immovable, sway like a tree being blown in the wind.
The days that have followed have been like a dream. We have been in full survival mode, grabbing what we can from our home, moving to an open space where we can escape the danger of collapsing buildings and power lines, sleeping in our tent and spending the days searching for food and clean water. And yet we have been more fortunate than so many others. Our tent is a luxury that thousands can’t afford. We have had much rain and thunderstorms since the quake hit, and most of the people are sleeping out in the streets with little to no shelter.
The death toll (now over 4,000) continues to rise as rescue teams and Nepalis dig through the rubble. Aftershocks are causing landslides which add to further damage and loss in the villages outlying Kathmandu. As we begin to hear from churches in the villages, our hearts sink as they report massive damage, flattened homes, and many lives lost. They are without shelter and food, and as we ourselves recover we are trying to bring them aid. Today some of our team members are bringing rice, lentils, cooking oil, salt, and tarps to one of the villages, with others traveling to 4 other villages with supplies as well.
Dane and I are so grateful for all who have contacted us with prayers, with encouragement, who offer peace and are lifting us to the Lord. Thank you all for your support during this time. We are dwelling on God’s words in Psalm 46:
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells. God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day. Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts. The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear, he burns the shields with fire. ‘Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.’ The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.”
We will continue to update as we are able, and as our team works to help in the relief efforts. We feel the Lord has allowed Nepal to be broken, but not destroyed. Pray with us as we help to build this country back up in the wake of such devastation.
- Pray that the Lord’s name will be praised and exalted in this nation.
- Pray for the thousands who are mourning the loss of loved ones, for those who are injured and in need of medical help.
- Pray for strength for all who are working to bring aid, and for those who are tirelessly digging through the rubble to find the lost.
- Pray also for boldness to proclaim Truth and Life in this time to those who are in need of hope, and for opportunities to be a light and a witness of God’s everlasting love and faithfulness, and for Jesus name to be heard by so many who have before this tragedy never had the opportunity to hear, or the openness to recieve.
We are believing and praying that Nepal will rise out of this with the name of Jesus on their lips and his peace and joy in their hearts.