Thursday, March 26, 2009

Prayer will have to be enough

A personal reflection today: Only some of my readers may know that I lived in Fargo for two years while working on a graduate degree at NDSU. Every spring brings a flood and one year that I was there the water was high enough that a temporary dike was built, but nothing could compare with this year.

The picture I've posted was taken on Wednesday with the river at 36 feet - at least 5 more to go they're saying. My dad (whose comments appear regularly on this blog) has been driving bus loads of volunteers to help with the effort, and he has a bag packed if evacuation becomes necessary. My brother-in-law serves in the National Guard and is in the area on active duty to help as much as possible. My former colleagues, classmates, and friends are all hoping that somehow their homes and their city will be spared.

It's staggering to think of the challenges the city is facing. It's already a federal disaster area, and outlying towns, homes, and farms are already being lost. In the city, they're making evacuation plans and urging people to update tetanus shots. They've cancelled all classes and businesses are closed so that everyone can be a part of the desperate effort to hold back the river.

You and I can't fill a sandbag (much as I wish I could do more), but please keep them in your thoughts and prayers in the coming days. There are more pictures of the area at this link and plenty of news coverage this week.

The hymn I'm singing in hope today is ELW 626:

By gracious pow'rs so wonderfully sheltered,
And confidently waiting come what may,
We know that God is with us night and morning,
And never fails to greet us each new day.


  1. Rev. Robert FerroMarch 27, 2009 at 8:29 PM

    All those affected by these floods are definately in our thoughts and prayers.

    An ELCA News Release about the flooding can be found at

  2. Thank you, Tom and pastor, for thinking about us. I'm not sure you can appreciate the effort that thousands of young people, both in high schools and colleges, have put in to make and place over 3 million sandbags in the last week. No investment can ever replace the one we make int he youth of this world.