Fire In Fort McMurray

As some of you may know I have two daughters living in Fort McMurray. This week was a very stressful week. I was at work when I heard about the fire but I did not make much of it. I saw pictures of a fire beginning but did not realize that shortly thereafter my two girls would be in the midst of this inferno! Life really is full of surprises! You never know from day to day what the outcome will be. That is why it is so important to know your spiritual status! Always be ready. I am so constantly reminded.

 Before I continue to share my story about the girls, I need to divert for a moment. As I was writing this my mind went on to think about my dear sweet friend, Barbara Guthrie who, last week Thursday buried her husband, a beautiful godly man, Wayne Kingsley Guthrie. My heart broke as I watched Barbie with her three children alone, knowing that not so long ago Wayne would be have been right beside her. I think it was one of the biggest funerals I have been to. It was so touching, and to see his son get up and speak with honesty about his relationship with his dad, was powerful. In death, there are no more secrets. People will speak the truth as they see it about the life we led. Wayne’s life was a life well spent giving his best to God. He was real, always had time for others but I was reminded that life is fragile, short and unpredictable.

He was so young by our earthly standards. We don’t understand why such a good man had to go but his work was done here on earth. I watched my friend Barbie weep. It’s as if she wanted to fall into that grave with Wayne. What is there to say? I can’t  imagine how she must have felt watching as her husband’s body was placed in the ground. The pastor preached a sermon which I will never forget. To some, God may have seemed silent through Wayne’s last days, but  during times of silence one thing God may be doing is testing us, much like a teacher tests a student. A teacher will teach and during that time, communicate all concepts, ideas etc but when the time comes for  testing, the teacher is silent. It is now time for the student to pass the test on his own, to perform without support. The pastor likened our silent experiences with God to this analogy. I thought it was quite clever and on point and so I choose now to share it. Last week, my friend Barb went through her schooling; losing her husband and now left to journey alone with her children. From my perspective, she’s passed with flying colours!

Now, back to my story. Now, this week was my testing period. My girls were in the midst of this crisis. All I could think of was, am I going to lose them in this fire?! I felt helpless because I was so far away! I had to completely trust God on this one. They lost all their possessions in this fire! This was so unexpected but I knew that if the worst came, the girls would be spiritually ready.

I’m happy to report that they are home safe with the family! Here’s the twist; Loveita was away on Big Brother Canada and she was evicted. I thought to myself, wow, if Loveita were not evicted and was not able to be there for her sister, her sister might not be here with us today. She lives with several disabilities and had no idea about the fire. She was alone in her apartment and may not have been alerted.

Everything happens for a reason. Thank God Loveita was there. It was not easy for her!  At one point Loveita said, “mom I thought this was the end. When I saw  ash raining down on my car and that I was stuck in traffic I wondered if it was even possible to get to Wreigna. I made it, thank  God!” The girls drove  20km north of Fort Mac.and ended up staying at a camp for  a few days where they  received a room and food. My girls  were favored and were given an airlift to the airport where they then took a plane back to Ontario.I am so thankful!!! Wreigna and Loveita, I love you so much!