God would provide

An Essay By Brianna // 4/24/2008

Through the darkness, I could hear voices. They were muffled by the floor that was between us. In my half-conscious state, I couldn't make out what they were saying. After a moment or so, I began to comprehend.
"Do you think--" my Mom was saying, in a sleepy sort of voice.
"Yes, you should check the news." That was dad.
Pressing my eyes, I pulled myself up into a sitting position. I could guess what they were talking about. It was the right season, and there had been a close call a few days ago. A tornado.
My eyes were drawn to the window, where they beheld a dark angry sky. I pulled my hair over my shoulder, and hugged the blankets about me, waiting for the for sure.
There were some shuffling sounds downstairs, and I knew they must have gone into the family room to turn on the TV. I waited silently, listening to my sister's even breathing as she slept. In a few moments, they emerged back into the kitchen, and I could hear them talking again.
"It's five minutes away...!" Mom sounded anxious.
"I guess you should wake them up," Dad said casually. Despite everything, I smiled. Dad never seemed scared of the weather.
I climbed down from my bunk, and proceeded to turn on the light. It flickered on, and then went out.
"Oh great…" I heard Mom say from downstairs. "The electricity went out."
"Where are the matches?" Dad was asking.
I felt around our room, searching for my flashlight. But of course, when I most needed it, it wasn't there. In a moment or two, my foot ran into something hard. I groaned, and stepped on my sore toes. Then I reached down to find the culprit. It was the flashlight.
Smiling wryly, I picked it up, and switched it on. A faint tiny faded orange light blinked in and out. I scowled, and shook it. It went out completely. Then threw it on the floor, where it regained it's bright light, and shone about our room. I smiled, satisfied.
"Katie?" mom was saying outside the door.
I opened it.
"There's a tornado coming," she said.
I nodded, "Okay..." I mumbled, and fumbled around for my writing book.
"Hurry up, it's almost here," she said, and then left.
Securing my writing book, my Bible, a blanket, and "A Tale of Two Cities", I was set. Reaching up to grab my pillow, I looked down in disbelief at my sister, sleeping soundly on her bed. She slept through everything. Rather dangerous, in my opinion.
"Anna..." I said gently, "Anna, come on."
She groaned and furrowed her brows, pulling the blankets up over her head and turning her back to me.
I sighed, and shook her.
"What?" she asked groggily.
"Tornado." I said, "Come on."
Something in her tired mind clicked, and she swung her legs over the bed. But she was too sleepy to do much more for a moment.
In the time she needed to collect herself, I made sure the windows were closed and locked.
Soon, we were stumbling down the stairs together. A little bobbing light met us at the bottom.
"You got it?" Dad asked, eyeing our arms full.
"Yeah..." I said, and led Anna to the basement door.
Downstairs, a candle flickered, and Mom and little Dan sat huddled together on the couch. Dan's face was scared, and he was asking in his little seven-year-old voice all about what was going to happen.
"Will it tear our porch off?" He asked.
"No." I said, with a reassuring smile.
"Will it suck up our kitties?"
"No, they're hiding. They know it's coming."
Anna lay down on the blanket on the floor, still reviving from being awoken during the night.
I looked all around at them, "Where's dad?" I asked.
"Upstairs," Mom replied, a little frustrated with him.
I dropped my things on the couch beside her, and ran up the stairs two at a time. I could hear her protesting voice from downstairs.
I glanced out the window, expecting the sky to be green. But, because it was night, it was simply black. I pulled open the porch door, and stepped out into the night. Everything was still. The winds that had previously kept me awake, had calmed. The rain that had been coming down, ceased. Only now and again a few drops were flung in weird directions.
A shiver ran up my spine. I could feel it. Such an intense stillness! The trees that had, a few moments ago, been rocking back and forth, were standing hanging their leaves limply. Nothing stirred.
"What.... Did you see it?" Dad asked, coming from around the corner.
"No." I said. My voice hung oddly in the thick warm air.
He pointed up, and showed me the grey clouds being seemingly whisked away by something. They uncovered a beautiful moon, and bright shining twinkling stars.
"How strange..." I whispered.
We stood watching for a second, and then we heard it. A great rushing in the distance. Like the pounding of the ocean... but more intense, because everything else was so still. And it seemed as if even my breath was being pulled into the current of the twirling mass of dirty gray in the distance. I felt as if my hair should stand on end.
I glanced down at our dog. She looked up at me with fearful eyes, and pushed her nose against my hand. It was cold and wet.
"Come on, Maggie." I said, and rushed into the house with her. Dad stayed.
"Come on Dad." I said, before I shut the door.
I was met at the top of the basement steps by a not-so-happy Mother. "Katie, come on! What are you doing?"

Fumbling in the dark with a match, I got some more candles lit. The room presently took on a lighter, cozier look.
Anna had awoken completely by now, and was trying to distract little Daniel by telling him stories.
Dad came down the stairs, and asked all the typical questions. Were the doors all closed? Did we have everything? Was the dog down with us?
In a few moments, Mom brought out the canned food, and we broke into a sort of nighttime meal, consisting of canned pineapples, cold beans, crackers, and jam.
Before any of us had a chance to finish, though, the great rushing grew louder. Daniel grabbed onto Mom’s arm. Dad looked up, and sat listening. Anna snuggled deeper into her blankets. It sounded like a train going right through our house.
Dad got up, and picked up the blanket. "We should move back here, come on."
Mom brought Daniel, and Anna and I brought the candles, hurrying after them.
We all squished together in the back room, and Mom led us in the rosary. The familiar prayer was so comforting. Every once in awhile, we would all stop and listen. Then continue. It seemed to go on forever. I held the rosary beads, turning them in my fingers.
"Our father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name...." another decade.
"Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee." Luke 1:28, Luke 1:48 The scripture passages came to my mind as I prayed, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus." Luke 1:42 "Holy Mary, mother of God..." Luke 1:43 "Pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death." John 19:26-27
Long after the words were finished, we sat in the dim light of the flickering candles. I prayed a silent prayer that God would protect us, and keep us safe, I tried to read my favorite Bible verses in the bit of light they gave. But after awhile, my eyes grew tired. And slowly, despite my tense nerves, I felt sleep wash over and through me.

Early morning. I was first aware of being stiff. And then of someone moving beside me.
"Should we wake them up?" Mom asked in a whisper.
I opened my eyes to find some light coming in from the block window at the top of the wall, and Dad standing up, stretching.
"Well, I guess so." He said.
I stirred myself, and stretched out my aching arms and legs. My head hurt.
Silently Dad and I began to collect things, and presently Anna awoke and helped us. And silently we all emerged, and mounted the stairs. Silently, we opened the basement door. And silently we observed that our house was undamaged. And silently, we looked out the windows to observe the fallen trees, the trees uprooted by their roots, the fallen branches, the disaster created. And silently, we flopped into bed to catch up on the sleep we missed.
Later, upon inspecting the damage, we could see the path of the tornado. It had made a half circle around our house, and then ploughed through our woods, leaving destruction behind.
I breathed a silent prayer of thanksgiving to God for answering our prayers the night before. Nothing but a miracle kept our house completely undamaged and safe. We were safe. Countless tornado's had come and gone. And I was sure countless tornado's would come. But God would provide protection.



Beautifully written ! I've never read such a horrible story of tornadoes and found it so riveting to read!

Anonymous | Thu, 04/24/2008


Good work. It's stunningly written. (I wish I'd been there, this last time...)

Aisling | Thu, 04/24/2008

I love it!

I love it Brianna!

Elizabeth | Fri, 04/25/2008


The Holy Spirit is the quiet guest of our soul." -St. Augustine


Thanks :)

Brianna | Tue, 04/29/2008

"We have been created for greater things. Why stoop down to things that will spoil the beauty of our hearts?" ~Mother Theresa

Ah, storms! ;)

I like it Brianna. It's very gripping. When did this happen?

Timothy | Wed, 04/30/2008

oh yeah....

...I forgot to tell you. :P

It happens a lot, so this was simply based on a mixture of times. But the last time was what inspired me to write. It was a few weeks ago.

Brianna | Wed, 04/30/2008

"We have been created for greater things. Why stoop down to things that will spoil the beauty of our hearts?" ~Mother Theresa