Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A River Gone Wild

Mrs. Beaver:

A couple of weeks ago we mentioned the flooding that was forecast to endanger our community, which was built in the 1850s on the banks of the Missouri River. Since we first mentioned the threat, the Missouri has risen several feet. The source of our troubles is record heavy snowfall in Montana followed by record rainfall in the same region.

There aren't many places to get photographs of the rising water because so many roads near the river are now closed. On a date last weekend, Mr. Beaver and I found a high spot that allowed a view. The next couple of pictures show how the Missouri is about three times as wide as normal. The river usually ends at the first tree line. If you look closely, you'll be able to see a couple of nearly submerged buildings. Interstate 29 is the road in the foreground in the first picture.

The basements of many homes have been breached. Still, hope lives. Levees, giant walls of dirt, were hurriedly constructed by the Corps of Engineers in key places. If they continue to hold, there is the chance that the damage that has been done already will not spread. The Missouri River is expected to stay at this level for the next two to three months. A lot of praying is going on in our town!

The population of the entire metropolitan area of Sioux City is only about 100,000 people, small for Mr. Beaver and me who have always lived in very large cities. Perhaps it is the smallish size of this community that has made the flooding painful to us even though we're far removed from any danger ourselves.

After living here for nearly nine years, we can't leave home without running into someone we know. We've built up relationships with so many people from our close friends from church to the dear people who care for our family at places like the orthodontist, the pediatric dentist or the local coffee shop. Right now everyone here has a story to tell related to the Missouri river flooding. Either their own homes are in danger or those they love have had to evacuate.

Here's another perspective on the Missouri's spread:

The flooded intersection in the picture above is located at Hamilton Boulevard and I-29. The road underwater is the one we took regularly to get to the pavilion where we had our breakfast picnics. It's also the route to the Lewis and Clark Museum and the younger kids' favorite playground. The museum is safe thus far behind one of the levees. The playground on the other hand is now a swimming pool. Many of you who have visited us have walked with us on the paved path along the river. That path is completely obliterated by many feet of water.

Our recreational inconveniences pale when contrasted with families whose homes and livelihoods are threatened. In our last post on the flooding, we asked you specifically to pray for the Nordstroms. They're the family whose blog is listed among those on the right of our blog, called "Room for More." The Nordstroms are the family who just adopted 4 year old Meddie Grace from Ethiopia two months ago.

Many stresses are pressing in on the Nordstroms. They've had no water in their home yet, but I know they would be grateful for your continued prayer cover. Adoptive families are built on the prayers of those who care for them! Please pray for a shower of God's grace on their family. Please pray these hard times will serve as God-blessed glue to build enduring family strength.

1 comment:

WhiteStone said...

Here in Onawa we're watching with great concern. Flooding much farmland here but town is dry. So far. The road to the Decatur Bridge is almost under water. As are a couple sections of I-29 near Blencoe. The new release rates are very worrisome.....