We have a membership at a local gym where our children are watched while Sarah and I spend some time alone together talking and working out. We worked hard yesterday afternoon to get out of the house and arrive right on time to maximize our time together, only to discover that the gym was closed and severe weather was arriving. Oops.
We went across the street to the Wal-Mart to pick up something nice for dinner, planning to head home and beat the storm. We didn't beat the storm: just as we were ready to check out, the manager of the Wal-Mart announced that they were shutting the store down for safety and everyone needed to either check out now and leave, or go take shelter in the back of the store. After some major indecisiveness on my part, we threw everything in our baskets and went to the back of the store.
Fortunately our shelter was one of the store sections most interesting to Sarah: party supplies, and even more fortunately, it had just been restocked with all new items since our last visit (less than a week ago ;) ). I had a bag of Wal-Mart deli chicken wings we hadn't paid for that was going to be my dinner, but I started feeding them to the children. I only got three of those wings! We received a number of calls from Sarah's dad keeping us abreast of the weather, and eventually when the store completely shut down we moved into the layaway section with our two grocery baskets and six children. Did I mention the children had been up late the night before and were getting quite tired at this point?
So a tornado touched down near the town we were in. And apparently another might have touched down in the town we were in. The one that touched down near town eventually lifted up, and appears to have flown right over us without touching us.
Thank you, Lord!
What a good time for our children, especially our oldest, to learn about prayer.
They also learned a lot about storms.
After the all clear was given, we quickly checked out because more storms were coming. I made sure to pay for our bag of chicken bones, and asked the cashier to throw it away. She remarked that she was packing our items into as few bags as possible, so we could get our babies in the car quick and get them home safely. Thank you, concerned Wal-Mart cashier!
We exited Wal-Mart in what appeared to be a monsoon (no tornados, just a major downpour), got ourselves in the car, and raced home. Dark clouds were behind us the whole way, but it constantly lightened up before us as we saw a rainbow, the sun, and some almost clear patches of sky. It had been so dark I had thought it was nighttime, but it turned out we got home in time to put the kids to bed before nightfall.