What Happened a Year Ago

During these exact days, a year ago...

this is what happened to our  beloved, sunshine State...



January 2011 was the worst Queensland Flood
 the state had experienced since the 1970s...


It was really bad... 
I mean, look at the this ^ picture. 
A town about two hours from us was flooded by an inland tsunami...
Suddenly...
Horrifyingly...
It killed many lives.

people stranded on their roof, waving for help
It destroyed many homes...
And traumatized families...
It started in December 2010, up in northern Queensland with many outlying areas getting sever flooding. But then it moved...
To Toowoomba... 



A few hours later that same day,
The City of Brisbane was basically evacuated hours before the river overflowed...
 and flooded the whole inner city...


The City Centre... beautiful and historic,
 that my family and I had driven through only a few weeks before, 
was flooded.


A home basically flooded to the roof...

a bird's view of the city of Brisbane, QLD during the floods

eerie beauty midst the storm

Streets washed over, and looking more like a lake!

The floods forced the evacuation of thousands of people from towns and cities. At least 70 towns and over 200, 000 people were affected. And an estimated 35 lives were lost, most probably more...

Brisbane River, overflowing its banks


Suncorp Stadium flooded
images via Couriermail and Google Images

Though we weren't directly affected (other than preparing evacuation bags, and finding a lack of water and basic supplies at the nearby Shopping Centre, nervously watching the news every moment for the list of suburbs in danger etc, and spending lots of time on our knees in prayer!!!!), we were greatly grieved by the tragedy around us, the loss of homes and businesses, but most of all the precious loss of life. An example of the tragedy that really shook the nation was 13 year old Jordan Lucas Rice who died after insisting that his 10 year old brother Blake be saved from the flood waters before him. He drowned along with his mother and has been dubbed by the public as an Australian hero...

But sadly, people forget...
I know the Lord was bringing Queensland to its knees...
There was a purpose for all this,
And yet we cannot forget, or pass it by.
That's why I just wanted to post about this today.
So that we will remember and seek the Lord more for our nation, for a revival and a turning to Him.
...If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land."  2 Chronicles 7: 14

Personally during that time, I learnt a lot. Especially about fear. It was one of those rare times in my life (especially in as I grew older) that a real danger was not too far from home and was liable to directly affect us. I clearly remember that though of course we felt worried and 'fearful' about what would happen, the Lord truly gave us unspeakable peace. I struggled a while thinking, Lord, please, please don't let the flood waters affect us! But slowly I felt His peace flood my soul, that peace that the world does not know. I realized that no matter what happened... we were safe in His arms. And all I needed do was to trust in my Abba Father.

The Lord comforted me with two special versus from the Bible during this time and I'd like to share them here. I know that no matter what happens in the future, these versus we can take with us into the 2012 as well.
"When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; 

      And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. 

      When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, 

      Nor shall the flame scorch you."
Isaiah 43: 2

"For this cause everyone who is godly shall pray to You
         In a time when You may be found; 
         Surely in a flood of great waters 
         They shall not come near him.
 You are my hiding place;
         You shall preserve me from trouble; 
         You shall surround me with songs of deliverance."
Psalm 32: 6-8


"They shall not overflow you" what a promise of the Lord to us, both in the trials of life, and in our spiritual journey! Even when we walk through darkness, water and fire... they shall not overflow us! Psalm 32 also really encouraged me to trust the Lord for protection and deliverance. He is our hiding place, our great Fortress. Let us trust in Him and thank Him for His faithfulness even in the midst of suffering and trial. Because Jesus is Victor!

Comments

  1. Dearest Joy,
    Yes, it was a heartbreaking time. But the Lord brought us through with His peace and kept us. The Lord is indeed merciful. Thanks for sharing.
    love,
    Sarah

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  2. Wow, I had no clue there was a flood there a year ago! What a blessing that you and your family were safe.

    That's a wonderful verse. We need revival in our nation too, so badly.

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  3. how well I remember these floods! First literally all of central QLD went under, and then the western rivers until finally Dalby, then Toowoomba, then Brisbane. I remember having a shower and my sisters running in 'HANNAH! TOOWOOMBA's FLOODED!'. Yeah. We stayed up most of the night phoning Brisbane river heights down to my grandparents. Then there was Yasi - probably one of the worst cyclones we've had. After Yasi was Award's Night! It seems weird that it's only been a year, seems like only yesterday we were listening to Yasi howling.

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  4. Dearest Joy,
    What a sad and troubling time this was for our state and nation. Thank you for sharing about this so beautifully... truly, He is our Hope and Anchor through any storm, and I saw this especially because this trial was so very close to home.
    Both of my cousins were very close to the scene of the Toowoomba tsunami; one even saw a mudslide cover the road two cars in front of him, and had to walk home. Praise the Lord; He is our sure and certain Hope through all times.

    Love,
    Maddy

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  5. Dear Joy,

    Thank you for your sweet comment on my blog. :) It is always a joy to read those comments.

    Praise His name that He sustained you in the trials you speak of... He is so faithful!

    May Jesus richly bless you.

    In Christ,
    Mikailah~

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  6. Thank you for sharing this Joy... this is such a true example of the Lord's Care over us.

    Praise the Lord sister, and thank you for sharing this. It encouraged me today.
    Love in Him, Carra

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  7. Dearest Sarah,

    It certainly was a really hard time during the floods, but as you said, the Lord was merciful and gave us such peace! I love you, dear sister.
    In His love,
    ~Joy

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  8. Hey Hannah,

    It was a true mercy from the Lord that we weren't affected by the floods directly. But it was really bad, and it made world headlines in the news. How we truly need a revival in the Church, worldwide! Thanks for your lovely comment :)

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  9. To hannahlousie: thank you for sharing your memory of those difficult days, Hannah. Basically most of QLD went under water I think. I remember watching in shock as Toowoomba was flooded so suddenly, shockingly, and then Brisbane River rose in a matter of hours, and we watched and prayed, and waited, wondering if it would hit us. Praise the Lord for His mercy, and for His protection for you too, during cyclone Yasi. That was terrible too.

    In His love,
    ~Joy

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  10. Dearest Maddy,

    Thank you so much for your sharing and comment. It was indeed a really sad time for our country, seeing all of the destruction and loss around us, which as you said, was really close to home. Wow, your cousins were really close to the scene. Were they personally affected? That's so true, dear sister, that in the midst of trials and storm, Jesus is our Refuge, and Hope. May we always cling to Him!

    In His love,
    ~Joy

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  11. Dear Mikailah,

    You're welcome, and thank you for stopping by too. Your comment was a blessing :). Amen, Jesus is really faithful!!

    Blessings to you too, dear sister,
    ~Joy

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  12. Hey Carra,

    What a blessing it was to read your encouraging comment! Yes, dear sister, the Lord's love and care to us is so amazing!

    I pray you're blessed in the Lord today, dear sister.
    Love in Christ,
    ~Joy

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