19-1/2 inches of rain in less than ten hours on top of already saturated ground and swollen rivers and creeks produced some major flooding overnight and early this morning in our home away from home, Marble Falls. Our old house on Hackberry, in the Pecan Valley Subdivision two streets off the lake where we called home for almost seven years, is under water. Johnson Park, where I’ve MCed beauty pageants and battles of bands, pushed my girls on the merry ground, prayed with youth groups, swung on the monkey bars, and eaten HowdyFest chili is underwater. Lakeside Park is flooded. A house across the street from Kyle & Marti Futrell was struck by lightning and burned to the ground because 1) fire crews were too busy rescuing people from their flooded-out homes and 2) they couldn’t get up there to fight it anyway. Highways 281, 29, and 1431 into and out of Marble Falls were flooded. Meadowlakes residents are trapped. There are 30 families trying to dry out at the Marble Falls Middle School, about two blocks up from the Futrell rent house we called home for the past two years. Great friends Jerry & Cindy Jamar had their house flooded. Clint & Tiffany Young are flooded. Dan Burdett, one of my closest friends, lost four of his commercial buildings on Commerce Street. There have been over 40 water rescues made since 4:00 this morning. There’s no water coming out of the city pipes. None. No drinking water. No bathing water. Everything’s shut down. A state of disaster has been declared. The National Guard has moved in. The Red Cross has set up shop at Cattleman’s Bank next to the HEB where they’re passing out bottled water. Apache helicopters and rescue units have arrived from Fort Hood in Killeen and have set up at Home Depot. All the floodgates on all five dams on the Highland Lakes are open, and the water levels are still rising. Lake Travis, not a small lake between Marble Falls and Austin, has risen over five feet since last night. The boundaries of the 100 year flood plain have been breached. Big time.
And they’re anticipating 8-9 additional inches of rain tonight.
Praise God there have been no injuries or deaths reported. Everyone was warned ahead of time. The LCRA did its job in getting the weather reports and communicating their forecasts for what the lakes and rivers would do. I know from long discussions with Guy Nelson and Don Graves how stressful that is. The system worked. But if they get more rain tonight, tomorrow will look worse than today.
Please pray today for all our great friends in Marble Falls. The people and the church there are a permanent part of our lives. Our hearts are with them today. And I wish you’d lift them up to God right now. May our Lord bless them and deliver them from the waters. May he grant them peace and comfort in the midst of the turmoil and uncertainties. And may he use that church, that body of believers who meet in Marble Falls, to reach out to the hurting community with the compassion and love of Christ. May our God use this awful circumstance to impact the area with his grace. And may the church there have the vision and the passion to see the opportunities for Christian service that are literally washing up all around them.
I delivered the Discipleship lessons I used at the Legacy Youth Retreat a couple of months ago to the teenaged children of the deaf people who are here for the annual National Deaf Christian Workshop. They were very responsive and enthusiastic about the pictures we have in our Scriptures regarding our God and his Son and what it means to truly follow him. Thanks to Collin Swofford for helping out and to Jason Brown for setting up my projector.
64 days until football season. And #64 on my all-time jersey list is Packers offensive lineman Jerry Kramer. Some would list Kramer ahead of John Hannah and Rayfield Wright as the best pulling-guard to ever lead a sweep. I’m thinking you and I could pull pretty well if we were leading for Jim Taylor and Paul Hornung. But Kramer certainly belongs in the top five. He played for the Packers for 11 years, won five NFL titles, including the first two Super Bowls. But what he’s most remembered for is the clinching block he put on Jethro Pugh in the Ice Bowl NFL Championship game of 1966 in Green Bay to spring Bart Starr for the game-winning TD.
13-seconds left. Cowboys up 21-17. 3rd down and no timeouts. And they quarterback sneak it over Kramer for the winning score. A surprise call. A great block. And it made Kramer famous. End zone TV cameras captured the block so well, and they showed it over and over again for weeks. Kramer became the very first ever offensive lineman recognized nationally for his blocking. And it was all because of TV and instant replay. In fact, the name of Kramer’s excellent autobiography is Instant Replay.
I hate it. Had the Cowboys won the Ice Bowl, the Super Bowl trophy would be named after Landry instead of Lombardi.
“During the night I had a vision—and there before me was a man riding a red horse! He was standing among the myrtle trees in a ravine. Behind him were red, brown, and white horses. I asked, ‘What are these, my lord?’ Then the man standing among the myrtle trees explained, ‘They are the ones the Lord has sent to go throughout the earth.'”