We are finally on the other side of the Great Tennessee Flood. Our home is high and dry but many of our friend’s homes were substantially damaged and some lost everything.
Diane and I went for a twenty mile bike ride yesterday to survey the damage. The entire valley we usually ride had been covered with water. As we rode we were reminded of what makes America great and what will keep America great.
Resourceful people with stubborn resolve.
Everywhere we went we saw neighbors helping each other meet this disaster head on. They were using creativity and muscle to salvage what they could and to keep their families safe. We saw people who had tractors and shovels and chainsaws making impassible roads passable. People with boats were rescuing strangers who had been caught by the rising water. They were doing all this before the government lifted a finger.
I am not criticizing the government. In this difficult time the government of Tennessee did a great job as fast as they could. What I am doing is I am praising the kind of people who see what needs to be done and are willing to do the work to “get er done!”
Friends who just returned from Haiti reported seeing the same kind of resolve and resourcefulness there. Millions of dollars that were given to aid organizations still have not yet reached the people who need it to provide the most basic needs. That money is still creeping through bureaucratic channels where shameful amounts are siphoned off to line the pockets of the greedy.
In the midst of this, small churches and non-government organizations have sprung into action accepting much smaller donations but getting food and shelter and help directly to the people.
They have passionate resolve to “get er done” and the creative resourcefulness to make things happen.
Two weeks ago I was with a group of men who were Prisoners of War just like my father. For over three years they survived unthinkable conditions, disease, torture, starvation, and mental cruelty. Their plight was unsurvivable, but they DID SURVIVE.
Each of their stories included unbelievable resourcefulness, and stubborn resolve. Sometimes their resolve was born of faith in God and sometimes it was just plain stubbornness. They had been abandoned. Their government was struggling to survive on other fronts of battle. They were alone. They learned what they had to do to survive and resolved to “get er done.”
I met a man yesterday using his tractor to haul dirt to rebuild the county road that ran in front of his home. He did not want me to take his picture because he had not “gone through the proper channels” to get er done” and was afraid he might get in trouble. I saw him today standing beside his temporarily repaired road. Dozens of cars went by as we talked. If he had gone through the proper channels, if he had stood beside the road with his hand out, waiting for the government to come, there would be a lot of people walking and wading instead of getting on with their lives.
This is the spirit that has made America the great country that it is today. When I need help with my family or home, these are the kind of people I will seek out.
This is the kind of person I want to be.
“Get er done”
Great Post Ken! A testament to the America I love and God blesses.
Thank you so much for sharing this. Living in Indiana, we’re aware of the situation our friends in Tennessee are dealing with, but we also know that there are many such as you describe who will “get er done”.
Thanks Ron, It was so refreshing to see people not waiting for the government to solve their problem. I so firmly believe that if we wait for the government to solve all our problems, the government will become our problem. The people that settled this country faced unbelievable hardship, and they pitched in and built the great society we have enjoyed for so many years. Thanks again for reading and commenting.
You are so right! We have a child with special needs and huge chunks of funding have been cut that aid her and so many like her – but we belong to a church that is saying, “We’ll step in and get ‘er done!” Love it. No waiting for the government to get it all straightened out. Just people helping people.
I am so grateful for the opportunity to have heard many of your DVD’s over the past several years. Proverbs is true telling us that laughter is GOOD Medicine!! Your sense of humor and the hand of God has pulled me out of a deep pit of dispare, THANK YOU for sharing.
Our church is in prayer for the people of Nashville and the crisis that has hit so many. I have two daughter who live in Bellevue. Their apt is on high ground,so they did not have the lose as others have experienced. They have kept us informed of the emotional devestation,as well as the physical. May God come and heal the wounds. I just wanted to let you know the people of Texas is praying.
God Bless you and those you love.
Without a doubt, we here in East Grand Forks understand the word FLOOD. In 1997 the Red River of the North spilled over its banks and forced the evacuation of about 50,000 people in the Greater Grand Forks area. We lost lots of “stuff” (for us it was everything in the basement), but after 13 years, we have permanent flood protection in place and the “stuff” we lost has become vague memories. We all have a much greater appreciation for what is really important, our faith, our family and our friends. May you feel the presence of God as you clean up the soggy mess there in Tennessee. Judi Loer East Grand Forks, MN
Funny how something like that helps us examine our priorities. Hope we can see you sometime again soon.
That was great to read!
Just reading through some of your blogs and found this one.
Living in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. About two weeks ago we were struck with a F2 tornado during early morning hours. It shocked our town. The town and Hydro workers were out in full force restoring power, people were lending a hand, disaster relief from across the country responded. It was beautiful to see community pull together!
Praise the Lord, I know He is moving in the community.
… Come speak in Southern Ontario sometime. : )