Monday, May 05, 2008

Words can inspire - part 2

As it happens, it was around this time last year that the town of Greensburg, Kansas was completely destroyed by tornadoes. The photo at the right shows part of the town from the air. The credits for this photo are for Jaime Oppenheimer of the The Wichita Eagle newspaper. You can see other pictures of this type here. I've never seen a tornado nor seen the devastation first-hand but this photo just shocks me. I've always heard how capricious tornadoes seem to be where a path of destruction can be seen through a town. Here, the whole town (with minor exceptions) was destroyed. Of course, tornadoes aren't really "capricious". We just assign that behavior to their actions.

There have been many news stories recently about how the town is rebuilding but, as usual, my favorite report came from Nation Public Radio. The Friday, May 2 report on its evening news show, All Things Considered, had this to say, quoting Mayor-elect Bob Dixson, "It's sad that the tragedy of the storm came through and wiped us out, but that presented us with a golden opportunity." The report went on to say, "Amazingly, many people here speak with gratitude about the storm that crushed the town. Greensburg had dwindled for decades, and the storm offered a fresh start." This is the same attitude found in the essay by Dr. Donald Rosenstein I quoted in my last entry. The people who are staying and rebuilding in Greensburg are adapting to the new situation. Of course they are sad at the destruction and loss of life but they realize you cannot turn back the clock. They haven't become inured to disaster and are obviously not condoning destruction. They are taking what God has wrought and making something new of it. I admire them for moving on.

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